Sample Curriculum

Session 1 | Central Virginia
Late September
Foundational communication and dialogue skills, personal leadership habits, structured dialogue, personality styles, environmental justice and the Shenandoah National Park’s legacy of human displacement.

Session 2 | Hampton Roads
Mid November
Fundamental group facilitation skills, the “Higher Ground” approach to setting group norms, conflict management styles, Chesapeake Bay water quality, fisheries, and sea level rise in coastal Virginia.

Session 3 | Richmond
Early January
Key leadership qualities, collaborative process design, group consensus, organizational cultural diversity, green economics, the ethics of advocacy lobbying, and Virginia’s Capitol.

Session 4 | Shenandoah Valley
Early March
Negotiation process preparation and practice, servant leadership, conventional and sustainable agriculture, water quality, TMDLs, and corporate stewardship.

Session 5 | Southwest Virginia
Late April
Public involvement, leadership without easy answers, rural economic development, the economics of extractive and renewable resources, coal mining reclamation, and the Clinch River regional collaboration.

Session 6 | Charlottesville
Early June
The “Open Space” group process, personal leadership goals, the values and ethics of leaders, plus current topics of the VNRLI class’s choice.