SACO — Keeping on top of educational trends to provide students with relevant courses to enhance their careers, University College-Saco has announced that it will begin offering a Graduate Certificate in Leadership Studies from the University of Southern Maine starting in January.

“This certificate is intended for those with a completed bachelor’s degree, professionals from the nonprofit and civic sectors who wish to enhance their leadership skills outside of a full graduate program,” said Daniel K. Philbrick, UC-Saco director. “Students will gain advanced knowledge in leadership theory and research and the skill sets required to work effectively.”

Philbrick said that emphasis in the certificate program is placed on self-awareness as a leader, reflective professional practice, and social responsibility.

“The focus will be on specific skills including complex problem solving, managing conflict, communicating effectively and building relationships,” he said.

UC-Saco will offer four courses in the sequence for the full certificate including Foundations of Leadership Studies I; Foundation of Leadership Studies II; Communication and Relationship Building; and The Conflict Process.

According Philbrick, the first course in this program will meet from 4 to 6:45 p.m. starting Jan. 22 through a video conference at UC-Saco.

He said the application process includes submitting a USM online graduate certificate admission application ( with a $25 fee, forwarding all undergraduate transcripts, along with a current resume and a personal statement. No graduate entrance examinations are required.

Recent graduates of the program at USM have said that the certificate allowed them to obtain an advanced education with a focus on the skills that best fit their areas of interest and to tailor their studies to their professional life.

There will be an information session on the Graduate Certificate in Leadership Studies at UC-Saco from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 14.

“Faculty and staff will be on hand to provide a program overview and to answer questions,” Philbrick said. “All interested students are invited to attend.”

Pre-registration is encouraged, though not required, with UC-Saco by calling 282-4111.

— Executive Editor Ed Pierce can be reached at 282-1535 ext. 326 or by email at [email protected]

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