Interdisciplinary PhD in Leadership Studies

Department of Leadership Studies

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The University of Central Arkansas’s Interdisciplinary PhD in Leadership Studies (LEAD) program prepares scholar leaders to research and act for the common good. Students come to LEAD from across public sectors: education, public health, community arts, and community development. Throughout the program, students’ expertise is enriched by scholarly study of how integrative leadership and research can enhance the quality of life and well-being of Arkansans.  Graduates of the program are prepared to lead through research to create social change.

Click here for more info on our application process. We are a face-to-face program, only occasionally offering online courses.

chassidyIf you have an inkling to serve others and improve quality of life, the LEAD program is for you. You will learn how to use research to drive your decision-making and serve the people you are trying to help. — Chassidy – Cohort 2014

The PhD in Leadership enlists the Human Development Index (HDI) and other quality of life indicators to gauge vitality and need. With knowledge of networking, decision-making, and research, graduates advance community and human development by targeting educational attainment, community vitality, public health, cultural/fine arts, environmental sustainability, and other developmental factors.

Cody VestThe LEAD program is a way to explore my profession deeper and to better myself as an educator.  Education in Arkansas is often viewed as being weak, but we can find ways to make improvements all across the board and the LEAD program is a great way to do that. — Cody – Cohort 2012

The PhD in Leadership program is the only degree program of its kind in Arkansas and is unique to this region of the United States. The program, taught by faculty from a variety of academic disciplines, offers a broad-based, interdisciplinary curriculum using scholarly skills and research for preparing active professionals to contribute to the knowledge of contemporary leadership and to assume organizational leadership roles.

LigonThe program allows me to focus on diversity and multicultural communications.  It allows me to be around people who also want to make a difference, and I’m going forward in my goals to help other people in my new country. — Katherine, Native of Ukraine – Cohort 2013

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LEAD Staff

Rhonda McClellan

Director & Professor – Dr. Rhonda McClellan

Dana Tribble

Graduate Assistant – Dana Tribble

Jeannie Stone

Graduate Assistant – Jeannie Stone







Jared Whitmire

Graduate Assistant – Jared Whimire

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