About the Center

Empowering Students for Effective Leadership

Methodist University believes preparing students for effective leadership is one of the most important responsibilities of higher education. Through the Lura S. Tally Center for Leadership Development, Leadership Fellows, and other campus programs, MU provides a rich array of opportunities where leadership can be learned and practiced.

There are four key ideas upon which the MU Journey’s Leadership initiative and center are based:

  • All students can become leaders.
  • Leadership must be based on ethical values.
  • Leadership is most effective when it is collaborative.
  • Effective leadership is about accomplishing positive change with others.

Leading well requires a foundation of knowledge, ethical values, leadership skills, and practical experiences. These steps are the basis for MU’s in-depth leadership training and development. The clearest implementation of these steps can be found in the Leadership Fellows Program, which offers courses for credit, off-campus internships and leadership conferences, mentorship relationships, workshops, seminars, guest speakers, sand much more.

The Purpose of the Center

Our country urgently needs abler and more ethical leaders in all walks of life. The Methodist University Lura S. Tally Center for Leadership Development was founded in 1995 to promote leadership among the students of the University. The Center’s activities include offering an academic minor in Leadership Studies, sponsoring an annual Community Leadership Conference, and coordinating other events throughout the year to enhance the leadership skills of those who participate.

Through the Methodist University curriculum, the Tally Center offers academic courses that develop traits and skills that employers will be looking for in the 21st century. Students participate in innovative courses, student-led activities, campus and community service, and off-campus internships. In addition to leadership theory and techniques, the Center emphasizes ethics, character, and self-confidence.


To prepare MU students for effective leadership by empowering them with the knowledge, values, skills, and experiences necessary to achieve positive change in community life and in the workplace.


Students who graduate with a minor in Leadership Studies will demonstrate basic skills of personal and interpersonal leadership; will demonstrate knowledge of the theories and approaches to leadership; and will demonstrate the ability to analyze and understand contemporary issues of leadership.

Students, staff, faculty, and community members who participate in one or more LSS courses or Tally Center sponsored events will have opportunities to enrich their understanding and abilities of leadership.


Develop Individual Leadership Skills

“Major capacities and competencies of leadership can be learned,” says Warren Bennis, a prominent scholar of leaders and leadership. The skills and techniques taught by the Center will prepare students for distinguished roles in business, in government, and in the community.

Promote Democratic and Civic Values

Our democracy is founded on the principle that all citizens share responsibility for governance. Thus we must have citizen leaders who possess the necessary democratic values of participation, responsibility, and integrity that guide how people live and work together. Through the Center’s activities, students will learn the meanings and importance of our society’s core values.

Inspire Ethical Behavior

When time is short and stakes are high, character may be a leader’s most important guide, motivating action toward decent ends. The Center will both test and develop students’ character through action projects and exercises.

Instill Personal Confidence

Effective leaders operate constructively in the midst of ambiguity, risk, delayed reward, and possible failure. The Center will strive to develop confident leaders who can empower others to solve problems even under difficult circumstances. “Everyone does have a leader inside,” writes Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor.