CFL’s Past, Present, and Future

I. The Past

The Center for Faithful Leadership continues a tradition dating back to Hope’s incorporation in 1866: “to provide comprehensive courses of study… enabling students to… prepare for positions of leadership in the nation and the world.” To enable students to prepare for positions of leadership is one reason President James Bultman created the Center for Faithful Leadership in 2005.

From its beginning, however, the vision for CFL went beyond offering courses of study. Instead, the center has focused on providing experiential opportunities that highlight several elements of Hope’s current mission, specifically: 1) preparing students for lives of leadership and service, 2) through academic and co-curricular programs, 3) of recognized excellence, and 4) in the context of the historic Christian faith.

II. The Present

CFL’s mission is to launch students by co-creating work experiences — that matter.  We enable students to experience their leadership potential by engaging them in projects that challenge them to apply their classroom learning to real-world problems. In other words, we want to engage students in a “lived theology.” We currently do this through three programs.

Leadership Minor

CFL’s first program was academic — leadership courses and a minor in Organizational Leadership Practice (2007). The Leadership minor has been one way that the center assists students in:

  • Finding their calling through the discovery, development, and reflective use of their gifts to the glory of God.
  • Preparing for meaningful internships and satisfying jobs by engaging their faith and honing their decision-making skills.
  • Transitioning out of college.

Although the minor does assist students in those ways, the other two current programs better realize the goals of CFL.

III. The Future

Taking very seriously Max DePree’s words that “preparation for leadership does not come from books” but from “hard work,” “wandering in the desert,” and “much feedback,” CFL continues to give students opportunities to experience their faithful leadership potential.

We also believe we are successful when our graduates holistically flourish.

Thus we have choose to primarily focus on CFL Consulting and the CFL Incubator in the future.  Less is more.

To learn more about CFL, click here.


Co-creating work experiences.  That matter.

41 Graves Place, VanZoeren Hall 182

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