College of Arts & Sciences Farber Center


Leadership Studies Minor

The South Dakota Board of Regents established the W. O. Farber Center for Civic Leadership in the fall of 1997 as a Center of Excellence. The Center is housed within the Department of Political Science and offers a minor in Civic Leadership Studies. The term "civic" was chosen to emphasize that the Center's focus is not narrowly governmental, but rather broadly inclusive of all aspects of our lives together as citizens of a community, state, nation and world.

Program Sequence

See our Civic Leadership Studies Minor in our Undergraduate Catalog.

Students may petition the director for a specific section to replace one of the required courses. The following is a sample of some courses that may qualify (some courses have prerequisites, which apply).

  • BADM 369 Organizational Behavior and Theory
  • BADM 365 Business and Professional Speaking (also SPCM)
  • BADM 485 Small Group Behavior
  • LDR 301 Public and Private Leadership
  • LDR 303 Leadership in Diverse Cultures
  • PSYC 430 Organizational Psychology
  • SOC 400 Leadership and Organization
  • SPCM 410 Organizational Communication
  • SPCM 411 Advanced Organizational Communication
  • SPCM 470 Intercultural Communication
  • SPCM 495 Team Building and Group Decision Making

Other courses upon prior approval of the Leadership Studies Coordinator.

A Conceptual Model of Civic Leadership

A Conceptual Model of Civic Leadership informs the Center's activities. The model suggests that three key components influence the look and feel of civic leadership: 

  1. Leadership enhancement, which focuses on both the study and teaching of leadership principles and practices.
  2. Management improvement, which concentrates on building and developing sound managerial practices to assist in collective action.
  3. Civic engagement and partnerships which emphasize the integral nature of community and individual involvement in the work of social governance.

Each of these three elements, including the idea of civic leadership itself, is a topic of educational activities, advisory services, and research. The relationship of these elements to each other in the work of public leadership is also, itself, a significant area of research and teaching. The methodology most appropriate for research, education, and advisory services is that of "action research," where theory and practice mutually inform each other through engagement with real life experience and thought. Action research, therefore, grounds the theoretical and practical aspects of the Center's work, and applied research is consistently a focus of faculty, especially through the Government Research Bureau affiliated with the Center.