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How It Works

The Academy started in December 2014 in Delhi, India, thanks to the vision and inspiration of several great leaders of the Movement. The opening Academy was very positively received by over 30 emerging leaders who participated from India and the Asia-Pacific Region. Since then, we have launched 17 more cohorts, enrolling 365 leaders from 107 countries into the Academy.

Each cohort attends a highly interactive, participant-centered face-to-face event where each leader develops and Action Plan. The participants are given an opportunity to engage with high-profile presenters and facilitators from partner companies and Special Olympics. Academy workshop topics include strategic vision, leadership styles, leading a team, influencing others, executing, managing change, ensuring sustainability. When they return to their work places, they implement their Action Plan over the course of 12 months. Every participant receives additional support via Percipio, Skillsoft’s online learning platform, executive leadership coaching, and other Academy resources.

One of the most interesting features of the Special Olympics Leadership Academy is diversity of participants. Leaders with and without a disability learn together about leadership, and such interaction transforms their mindsets. The Academy’s unique learning environment ensures that Unified leadership becomes the default leadership approach of every participating leader.

In this video about the Leadership Academy, leaders from the Delhi, Philadelphia and Mexico City Academies talk about what they learned.

Special Olympics Leadership Academy Introduction Video