Twenty-two young professionals from a wide variety of organizations compose the 2017 class of Leadership Essentials. This six-month leadership development program, instituted by Leadership Howard County in 2007, is now managed by Loyola University Maryland as part of the Sellinger School of Business.
Similar to Loyola’s graduate business programs, Leadership Essentials develops skills that allow participants in the program to stretch their leadership potential and contribute significantly to their organizations, their families and their community.

The program has three core components: skill building workshops, a coach relationship and a Community Impact Project team experience. The skill-building workshops, focused on specific leadership characteristics such as team-building, project management, the leader as a coach, presentation skills, collaboration and negotiation, include exercises and reflection to facilitate the participants’ ability to sharpen critical skills necessary for effective leadership.

Throughout the six months of the Leadership Essentials program, each participant works with a coach to help him or her unlock the answers within, enabling the person to make better decisions and strengthen relationships and leadership skills.

Participants also contribute to a small team on a short-term Community Impact Project that challenges them to put their lessons learned and leadership skills into action. This year’s Community Impact Project hosts are: Columbia Center for Theatrical Arts, HopeWorks, Interfaith Coalition for Compassion, Soccer Association of Columbia and TasteWise Kids.

“In a hectic time of career growth, Leadership Essentials provided me with an excellent opportunity to slow down and explore what makes a great leader. Through coaching and discussion with classmates, I have strengthened my core values and built lasting friendships,” said Timothy Guy, assessment coordinator, Howard County Public School System, and graduate of Leadership Essentials 2015.

Loyola University values its strong community alliances, especially its collaboration with Leadership Howard County and with the Leadership Essentials community of alumni, coaches, community leaders and facilitators.

Applications for Leadership Essentials 2018 will be available in July, with a deadline in early October. Information sessions will be held in August and September; visit for more information.


Lori Fuchs is the Leadership Essentials program manager. She can be reached at [email protected].