Leaders of the Free World at UD

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Keynote and Video from the 2022 Conference

2023 Conference

We are already in the planning stages of the 2023 conference! Check back with us to learn more and watch for registration details.

A Virtual Career Conference for ​Black Male College Students 

The Global Leadership Summit is a virtual intercollegiate career conference focused on helping the next generation of global leaders thrive globally, with a focus on:

  • Diversity and Inclusion in Global Leadership
  • Career-Development & Readiness on a Global Scale
  • International Leadership Development
  • Networking & Global Exchange

Email Ruby Maddox or Lavar Thomas with any questions.

Are you a Leader of the Free World?

A Leader of the Free World

is committed to the betterment of humanity; irrespective of geography, race, religion, ability, gender, sex, identity, or orientation. Leaders strive to improve themselves, their communities, and the world.

Our mission is to develop a community of dynamic leaders who are globally minded, self-aware, and service-driven. We believe in cultivating a new generation of leaders.

Program Benefits

The Leaders of the Free World Program is focused on the personal and professional development of young Black men. LFW Fellows will take part in a 9 month leadership development program that includes a trip to Ghana, mentorship, leadership training, and networking.​ Our program maximizes the potential of our students while building their confidence, effectiveness, and self-efficacy. We teach our fellows to be  resilient, courageous, self-reflective, and action oriented.

The LFW experience is more than just a trip.

In addition to their international experience, LFW Fellows participate in the program with students from several different institutions and are matched with an accountability partner and a LFW Mentor. Fellows also participate in seminars with industry-leading practitioners in the fields of business, tech, education, social impact, and more. Through the process of the program, fellows expand both their national and international networks and reflect on what it means to be a global leader.

The Leaders of the Free World Model works in three phases:
(After Orientation and Launch Period / February – March)

1. Pre-Departure program:
(Online/Video Conference)
10 Sessions / May – June
Group discussions, guest speakers, lectures, and assignments.

2. International Experience in Ghana:
(2 weeks July 17-31)
Intercultural activities, service-learning. Exploring themes in Leadership through lectures, workshops, and site visits. Group reflection sessions on culture, identity, self-mastery, goal-setting and accountability.

3. Post-Trip Curriculum:
(online/video conference)
6 Sessions  / August – October
Group discussions, goal-mapping, linking experience to academic goals and institutional resources.

Fellows Will…

  • Increase their leadership capacity
  • Increase their confidence and self-awareness
  • Travel to Ghana, West Africa
  • Gain skills in intercultural communication
  • Receive career counseling
  • Join the Leaders of the Free World Alumni Group

Selection Criteria: (Demonstrated examples of the following in application)

  • Leadership
  • Persistence
  • Commitment to Service
  • Achievement 


All applicants to the Leaders of the Free World Fellowship Program must meet the following qualifications for consideration:

  • Be an African-American male and current student (18-27yrs) enrolled in an accredited degree program in in the United States.
  • Have a minimum GPA 2.5 (4.0 Scale). Consideration may be given to applicants with lower GPAs: applicants should provide a an explanation in their application.
  • Have completed at least 2 semesters of college credits by the end of Spring 2022 semester.
  • Be a U.S Citizen or permanent resident. (For travel and visa purposes)
  • Be committed to either 1) transferring to a bachelor’s degree program/4yr institution (if in community college); 2) pursuing an academic or professional development opportunity; or 3) pursing some form of career advancement upon completion of the LFW program.
  • Students must be willing to receive necessary vaccinations.  (Yellow Fever and COVID-19)

Program Expectations

Fellows must agree to the following:

  • Commit to all three phases of the LFW Program
  • Regularly meet/check-in with LFW mentor
  • Attend all LFW virtual meetings.
  • Participate in program fundraising initiatives.
  • Obtain all necessary documents for travel
    (Passport, Visa, Travel Insurance).

 Students will receive guidance on procedures for travel documents.

Students need to make sure they are available to attend Monday night program sessions and international trip dates:

2022 Program dates and expected time Commitment:


10 Sessions pre-sessions (Monday nights)

  • Bi-monthly (March-May)
  • Weekly Sessions (June 6 – 27)

2 weeks in Ghana (July 17-31)


6 Post Sessions (Aug - Oct)

Don't Miss!!!

To learn more about the Leaders of the Free World program at UD, (including financial aid that may be available to you).

Who Are We?

Leaders of the Free World