Shared Competencies

Students participate in a variety of learning experiences while enrolled in a University.  From academic courses, to co-curricular experiences, to internships, they are constantly learning and developing their leadership skills.  Measuring this development, however, can be much more difficult. Helping students articulate their experiences to employers can also be challenging.


The Student Leadership Competencies are comprised of 60 leadership competencies that cut across all 522 accredited academic programs in U.S. Higher Education and a variety of contemporary leadership models.   The competencies help determine the knowledge, values, abilities, and behaviors that help an individual contribute to or successfully engage in a role or task, and are a method of measuring student learning, providing consistency across programs and departments, communicating learning to employers, and enhancing existing curriculum.  At the University of Kentucky, we have selected 7 core competencies which will be infused into all leadership experiences division wide, and will allow for additional program development, support, and effectiveness.


In fall 2017, Leadership Education staff assembled a committee of individuals from various departments with a connection to student leadership development.  This committee met to review all sixty competencies and to determine which competencies were consistent across all departments and students. The committee compiled a list of seven core competencies that all UK students should be proficient in upon graduation from the University.  These seven competencies are:

o   Inclusion

o   Self-Understanding

o   Decision Making

o   Verbal Communication

o   Strategic Planning

o   Resiliency

o   Productive Relationships


The Student Leadership Competencies are an important way to measure student learning across a variety of leadership experiences while in college.  Not only do they assist in general program assessment, they provide consistency across departments, and allow for a common language through which students can articulate their leadership experiences.     




For more information on the shared competencies, or to learn how to incorporate the leadership competencies into your work, please contact Alli Lake at