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At Berkeley Public Health, a cornerstone of our mission is to develop diverse leaders for professional and research careers. Since 2008, the RISE: Berkeley Public Health Careers and Leadership Office has provided masters and doctoral students with opportunities for developing their leadership skills through courses, fellowship programs, workshops, events, mentorship connections, assessments, and an online leadership toolkit.

What do we mean by leadership?

We believe everyone can be a leader, and that we can lead from wherever we are.

Regardless of the type of sector, geographic location, health topic(s) addressed or positionality, we can each engage in transformational change via a wide variety of roles and approaches.  We envision leadership as a lifelong journey that involves offering to be of service, leveraging our abilities to aid, coordinate, mentor, guide, and nurture the advancement and development of initiatives, projects, policies, and organizations. Through our leadership offerings, we value and encourage the sharing of experiences and perspectives that come from outside the traditionally defined domains of “professional” or “career” development, acknowledging that what is considered “good” leadership may vary across different times, populations, and cultural contexts.  However, what is consistent and seminal throughout these domains is creating a vision, knowing oneself, and taking actions consistent with one’s values.  By leading from the inside out, we recognize the importance of self-discovery and continual learning from successes and missteps in affecting change. 

Student Opportunities for Leadership Development

Leadership Boot Camps

In consideration of the requisite skills needed for successful careers as leaders in the field of public health, the RISE Office offers Leadership Boot Camps, or half-day trainings, that are held every semester. All Berkeley Public Health students are invited to take part in these Bootcamps, which are designed to train students with fundamental leadership skills that will help them find the practicum opportunities and jobs they desire. Boot Camp trainings reflect the challenges involved working in our field of public health (e.g., bridging different academic disciplines and problem-solving approaches) and include topics such as public health leadership, teamwork, scientific communication, and organizational awareness.

Leadership Courses

Since Spring 2020, the RISE Office has offered leadership courses to prepare BPH students to lead and influence in the spheres they find themselves in both during school and after graduation. Our vision is to foster an environment of open dialogue and to encourage each student to think critically about how to define and apply models of leadership, communicate and negotiate in organizational environments, empower others, guide decision-making, and collaborate effectively in teams, all within the context of diverse public health practice. Much like our leadership boot camps and other offerings, our courses foster an active learning environment through a combination of lecture, discussion, role-play exercises, and real-world application of learning around public health leadership.

Additional Resources

Berkeley Public Health Student Group Support

The RISE Office offers support to the various registered student organizations that are housed within Berkeley Public Health. We have a dedicated graduate-level Graduate Student Associate, who serves as a liaison, advisor, and trainer to the board members of student groups, such as Alianza Latine for Public Health Action (ALPHA)Black Advocates for Equity in Health (BAEH), and Queering Public Health (QPH). 

The RISE Office Leadership Toolkit

The RISE Office Leadership Toolkit is a practical “go-to” resource with leadership tools and frameworks that can be applied to be more effective in one’s projects, internships, and jobs. The tools provide content in areas of leadership that public health employers and Berkeley Public Health faculty, students, and alumni have identified as essential for success, such as leadership authenticity, building teams, communication, and strategic problem-solving.

Visit the Leadership Toolkit page.

Library Collection on Leadership Development

The RISE Office has partnered with the Public Health Library to provide students with a book collection on a variety of topics for your leadership and professional development. Expand your knowledge and sharpen your skillset as you learn from industry leaders on topics such as: negotiation, participatory decision-making, building teams, effective communication, project management, influential leadership, managing up, and change management. We welcome you to peruse the list of recommended books here.