Center for Leadership Development & Career Preparation

Becoming the Leaders and Best takes hard work, commitment and plenty of self-discovery. The University and student-athletes team up when it comes to personal development, and like any good teammate, we’ve got their back. We’re here to address their unique needs and experiences as a student-athlete and provide the best possible resources to help them succeed wherever life takes them. That’s why we established the Center for Leadership Development and Career Preparation. Focusing on core values that support independence, excellence, family, perpetual growth, integrity and outreach, this program helps student-athletes graduate world-ready and prepares them to achieve and surpass their personal and professional goals.

Building Champions

Our coaches recruit and develop student-athletes into champions who carry on Michigan’s championship tradition with integrity. We believe that exceptional performance extends beyond athletic accomplishments, and it’s our responsibility to provide them with the skills they need to have a competitive advantage not only in the athletic arena, but also in life. Our approach to developing leaders involves programming centered on personal development, leadership, career preparation, and community engagement.

A group of U-M student-athletes hold hands.

Personal Development

We equip our student-athletes with the tools necessary to live a fulfilling and successful life, as a student-athlete and beyond the Michigan experience. In addition, our Athletic Counseling team, made up of psychologists and counselors are well-positioned to respond to the individual and group needs of our student-athletes. As a part of our personal development initiatives, we promote self-discovery, healthy relationships, self-reliance, cultural competency and confidence, while helping them manage stress, develop their personal brand, and augment their strengths.

A large group of U-M student-athletes complete a team-building activity.

Leadership Training

Leadership skills are essential no matter where life takes you. At Michigan, we focus on helping student-athletes develop these skills so that they can successfully lead organizations and communities. They identify and explore values, vision and leadership styles, learn what it means to be financially independent, and engage in community service and advocacy. Through leadership training, we help them communicate and collaborate effectively, develop campus and faculty relationships and foster community engagement opportunities, while honing their conflict resolution, critical thinking and time management skills.

U-M student-athletes interact with alumni at a networking event.

Career Preparation

Life after graduation can seem uncertain and the vast world of career opportunities can easily become overwhelming – so we’ve developed specially tailored resources to help make student-athletes transition as smooth as possible. As a member of the Michigan community, student-athletes have access to dynamic professional, educational and career programs and services that empower them to discover, prepare for and adapt to postgraduate life.

Community Engagement

The Michigan Athletics Let’s Go Do program connects student-athletes with local non-profit organizations to create mutually beneficial experiences. Let’s Go Do helps our student-athletes explore their interests through meaningful, educational experiences, while our local organizations benefit from their donated time, energy and passion. We focus on providing a diverse range of community service opportunities, so our student-athletes are able to select the ways they can give back. The Let’s Go Do program is just one more way we’re supporting our student-athletes’ complete experience. Let’s go help. Let’s go connect. Let’s Go Do.

We Are Michigan

More Stories
Show back of card. Nikki Peters, women’s gymnastics, class of 1999

Nikki Peters

Park Supervisor of Recreation, Chicago Parks Department - Women's Gymnastics

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The recognition and adulation you receive from being an athlete at Michigan and sporting that Block M carries such an amazing amount of respect. My coaches, academic advisors, and other student-athletes on campus created a standard of greatness that I continue to showcase on a daily basis. I reflect on my time in Ann Arbor almost every day. The memories, the friendships and the life lessons I've gained are incomparable.
Show back of card. Abby (Crumpton) Minihan, women’s soccer, class of 2002

Abby (Crumpton) Minihan

Women's Soccer Head Coach, USC Upstate - Women's Soccer

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My experience at Michigan as an athlete was paramount to the person I am today. Through the academic and soccer culture, I learned how to be industrious, disciplined and ambitious, while still celebrating our team and Michigan Athletics. Through the guidance of administrators, coaches, teachers and teammates I was able to develop as a person, as a student and as an athlete. The synergy in the environment is phenomenal and that is why Michigan is always creating the Leaders and Best.
Show back of card. Stacey Ervin, men’s gymnastics, class of 2015

Stacey Ervin

Men’s Gymnastics

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Michigan has offered me experiences in both academics and athletics that could not be paralleled at any other university in the world. This university has helped me grow as an individual and leader. I've gained friendships that will last a lifetime and memories that I will never forget.
Show back of card. Megan (Bower) Tannenbaum, Volleyball, class of 2010

Megan (Bower) Tannenbaum

Equipment Manager, Michigan Athletics - Volleyball

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Michigan was my last college visit. As a junior in high school, I wasn't quite sure what I wanted in a school. I was nervous to make such a big decision. One thing I was absolutely confident in was that I wanted to compete in the best conference in the country. After my weekend in Ann Arbor, I knew this was hands down the place for me! Michigan offers something special that I had not felt at other schools. I walked off of campus and knew I would always be proud of being a Michigan Wolverine. I knew for my entire life, I would wear the Block M with pride knowing I represented one of the best academic and athletic institutions in America. Go Blue!