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Fundamentals by the Westside Leadership Institute is a unique and immersive 16-week program designed to empower community members with the skills and knowledge needed to effect positive change in their neighborhoods. Taught by university professors and experienced community leaders, the program offers a comprehensive curriculum covering essential topics such as community organizing, project planning, leadership development, effective communication strategies, and practical applications. Available every Spring and Fall semester in English and Spanish, the course involves three hours of in-person instruction per week, ensuring a hands-on and interactive learning experience.

In this course, participants will learn the fundamentals of community engagement, access valuable resources, and enhance their leadership capacity. They will gain hands-on experience through real community projects, develop their leadership skills, and build valuable networks within their community. Participants will also receive ongoing mentorship from seasoned leaders, access to a well-developed student guide, and multilingual instruction to ensure inclusivity. As part of their participation in the Fundamentals course, they will receive a UCard (identification from The University of Utah) with various perks, including library privileges, student-priced tickets for campus events, access to student services and programs, campus recreation privileges, and a discount at the Campus Store for students, staff, and faculty. Additionally, the UCard functions as a UTA Ed Pass, allowing free rides on Trax and most UTA bus routes.

Leaders completing this course earn 3 Continuing Education Credits from the University of Utah at only $75 (market value: $1,500). This makes Fundamentals an affordable and accessible opportunity for anyone looking to make a meaningful impact in their community while enjoying the benefits and resources available to University of Utah students.

*At Westside Leadership Institute, we welcome individuals from all backgrounds and educational levels to participate in our programs. You do not have to be a college student to join us in developing your leadership skills and making a positive impact in your community.

16 weeks

fall & spring semester 


3 university credits 

english & spanish

august - December

January - april


mission, vision, and values

board governance

civic engagement


grant writing

marketing & social media

networking & resources

finance basics

project execution

Start your leadership journey today! 

Seed Funding

Leaders are granted project funding and receive added support from subject experts through regularly scheduled workshops

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peer support

Leaders network regularly with peer cohort and build stronger connections within the community

apply skills

Leaders apply leadership concepts through the success of projects, development of networking connections, being active in the community, confident to serve on community boards/organizations, and attend council meetings


Leaders have a clear understanding of the Westside Leadership Institute partnership and its resources

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