Leadership Institute

paz-crowd.jpgPromise Arizona’s Leadership Institute will work to build a strong bench of young Latino and immigrant leaders who are ready for action, grounded in a history of social movements, led by values and ready to make a positive impact. 

The Leadership Institute will connect young leaders to one another and help our leaders build confidence, raise self-esteem and create a culture of civic action and change in targeted communities. 

One of the key learnings that PAZ has drawn on through its past experience is that the best way to inspire, train and prepare Latino youth for the challenges of leadership is through experiential learning.  Hands-on, real organizing in the trenches, guided by experienced staff, provides an incredible learning environment.  Actual field organizing coupled with a well-crafted organizing curriculum will create a balanced and powerful combination designed to produce the next generation of Latino leaders in the state of Arizona.  PAZ will build a new generation of skilled leaders cultivated from our key institutions including churches, high schools and universities.  


The PAZ Leadership Institute will launch in the spring of 2014 with the goal of attracting high school and college students to train as organizers and be a part of the next generation of Latino and immigrant leaders in Arizona.    The Leadership Institute will have two major programs:


The PAZ Leadership Institute will open a competitive application process in April, 2014 to attract ten top college students to be part of a 10-week summer fellowship program focused on organizing.    College students will work with organizers and mentors at PAZ to undergo both in-depth, intensive leadership training as well as intensive learning as part of a community organizing team at Promise Arizona.    The core curricula will include but not be limited to community organizing, personal development, cultural learning, conflict resolution, time-management, event planning, civic engagement and communications (both earned and digital/online communications practices).  The summer institute will be a balanced combination of classroom instruction as well as experiential learning in the community.  Fellows will get daily opportunities to apply what they are learning in real-life organizing situations.   Fellows will also get specific assignments to targeted neighborhoods to build Promise Arizona teams around specific civic engagement targets (voter registration, voter education, voter outreach and GOTV). 

Upon successful completion of the summer institute, PAZ will invite the top four fellows to join as “Organizing Assistants” and work as mentors and trainers for the high school student leadership institute.   Organizing Assistants will receive a stipend to work to train high school leaders with PAZ for either the fall or spring sessions (or possibly both in some cases). Organizing assistants may also later be considered for open organizing positions at Promise Arizona (depending on availability) or recommended for organizing positions with allied organizations that are a part of the national immigrant rights movement.   

Due to the focus of Promise Arizona on transforming our state, we will give preference to highly qualified students attending local colleges in Arizona but the program is open to all college students nationally.    Ideally launched during the summer of 2014, the PAZ Leadership Institute will make an application available soon with application due dates, stipend information and other key program information.


During the fall and winter PAZ will recruit 40 high school students (20 students per session) to attend the PAZ Institute.  Each class will have a senior Organizer on PAZ’s staff as well as the help of an Organizing Assistant.  High school students will meet in class twice each week for a total of 12 weeks with classes scheduled to accommodate student schedules.   One session each week will be dedicated to classroom instruction while the other will be a field experience and learning module where students work in the field as part of actual community organizing teams.    Although the schedule has yet to be finalized a sample institute schedule for class A would be for students to meet on Tuesdays for 3 hours of classroom instruction and learning while Class B would meet on Wednesday (again for 3 hours).  Both classes will then meet on Saturdays in the field to help Promise Arizona build leadership teams in the community.   With the guidance of their instructors each class will determine real world issues which they could act on with community leaders as the focus of their end of semester class project.  Both fall and summer programs would follow a roughly similar schedule.

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