The Second Cohort of the European Leadership Programme started on the last weekend of September. The eight new, young leaders were recruited from different European countries such as Italy, Hungary, France and Belgium, following the same personal ambition: To develop in their leadership skills, to get to know Brussels from an insider’s perspective and to practice the Jesuit principle of “Magis”, the wish to do more for others, to be a (wo)man for others. 

The five months long Programme is based on five segments, which all contribute to the formation of the Fellows. he aim is to prepare them for the serving type of leadership. Brussels, the European capital is the new home for our ELP Fellows, which allows them to be immersed in the corridors of the institutions of the European Union and be surrounded by the daily flux of lobbyists, eurocrats, Jesuits, diplomats and NGO representatives.

Through a set of interdisciplinary methods, such as spiritual coaching, community life for self-development, informal talks with our high-level guest speakers and a variety of social events, as well as by practicing the everyday reflection, they will experience all aspects of the life of a leader. The ELP team firmly believes that only such a holistic approach is arming the Fellows for the unavoidable challenges and pitfalls that they will be facing during their professional career. 

This is the second edition of ELP, running from the 1st October 2019 to the 28th February 2020. The pilot edition was led by Fr. Peter Rožič SJ, Director of the Jesuit European Social Centre (JESC), who had to develop an institutional home for such a Programme inside JESC.

The Inaugural Weekend was orchestrated by JESC European Leadership Programme Manager and Secretary for Leadership Botond Feledy,, ELP Assistant Zsófia Voda and JESC’s Director’s Executive Assistant Eleonora Vitale.  One of the highlights of the weekend was a city walk organised by the Cornerstone Network in downtown Brussels, where we recited the local history through the lense of social justice. The Fellows got acquainted with the place that will host their pathway of intellectual and personal growth for the following five months – to begin with. 

For the weekend closure, the ELP Fellows had the chance to listen to an introduction by Fr. Guy Martinot SJ at La Viale Europe. In line with the Community segment of ELP, they were offered some inspiration to do volunteering work by David Anderson, who spoke on behalf of Serve the City Brussels. Here, the Fellows will be involved in different projects once a week as part of their personal growth process. David highlighted the importance of helping people to make a city grow in the right direction, based on the premise that the essence of life is about people and creating bonds between us. Beginning this week, the Fellows will receive guidance from a personal coach and lectures from High Level speakers representing different organisations and institutions.

If you want to receive more information on ELP events do not hesitate to follow our account on instagram @jesc-elp; our Facebook Page European Leadership Programme or subscribe to our Monthly ELP Newsletter.

by Alba Requejo Hernández

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