Students in Classroom

Take Charge! Leadership Development

The University of New Haven’s Take Charge Leadership program mission is to provide experiential opportunities to explore concepts and develop skills in a co-curricular environment. Students are challenged to become more critically, globally and socially aware community members through the incorporation of the six Competency Learning Experience (CLE) areas into their collegiate experience: Leadership, Teamwork, Critical Thinking, Global and Cultural Awareness, Resilience and Communication.

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Three-day pre-college experience exclusively for first year undergraduate students who want to get a jump start on their leadership skills. Through activities and workshops, participants will establish friendships with other new students, develop skills, and explore concepts pertaining to the six areas of the CLE. The experience is facilitated by professional University faculty and staff, outside speakers, and upper-class students who serve as mentors to participants. Interested students may apply to one of two distinct cohorts, each with a unique theme: FLEx Adventure or FLEx Success.

  • FLEx Adventure is for incoming undergraduate students with a shared interest for pursuing leadership opportunities during the collegiate experience such as student government, clubs and organizations, athletics, etc. The experience provides aspiring student leaders the chance to develop essential skills to lead at the University and beyond while establishing relationships with upper-class student leaders.
  • FLEx Success is for incoming students who self-identify as underrepresented (including BIPOC, LGBTQ+, First Generation, Dream/DACAumented, Ability, Gender Identity [female identified students], military status, and socio-economic status) connect to opportunities for success in their first year. In collaboration between the Myatt Center for Diversity & Inclusion (MCDI) and the Center for Student Engagement, Leadership & Orientation (CSLEO), the experience provides underrepresented students with a supportive and caring learning environment through participation in interactive activities, and early connection to curricular and co-curricular resources to meet their intellectual, social, emotional, and cultural needs. Students will have the opportunity to continue with FLEx Success for the remainder of their first year through an immersive mentorship experience (more information is available on the FLEx application).


  • FLEx is August 13-16, 2021


  • Mentorship by upperclass student leaders
  • Opportunity to connect with new peers
  • Explore personal and professional leadership development topics


  • Log into the MyCharger Portal, then click here to access the application
  • Applications are due by 12:00 p.m. (eastern time) Friday, July 23
  • All applicants will be notified by 5:00 PM (eastern time) Friday, July 30 of their application status via their University of New Haven email account

If you have questions about FLEx or the application, please contact the Center for Student Engagement, Leadership and Orientation (CSELO) by calling 203-479-4582 or emailing the Leadership account at

FLEx - Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why should I apply for FLEx?

    FLEx is a truly unique experience for University of New Haven students and is only available to incoming first years. Since it was created in 2015, FLEx has quickly become one of the most popular, talked-about experiences on campus. Past participants consistency cite FLEx as the reason they got involved on campus in one of our 160 Recognized Student Organizations, the Undergraduate Student Government Association (USGA), Greek Life, etc. FLEx creates the opportunity for students to explore and understand what leadership means to them, and how to improve skills that employers are looking for in new professionals. Participants will be mentored by upper class students who have previously participated in FLEx with the intent to support their own goals and aspirations.

  • How much does it cost to participate in FLEx?

    FLEx is free for all student participants. The Undergraduate Student Government Association (USGA) and a member of the University’s Board of Governors pays for the experience so there is no cost for students. If a student is selected to participate in the experience, accepts, and does not attend, their student account will be billed $250 for the full cost of one participant.

  • Are meals included?

    Yes, all meals are included for the duration of FLEx. If you have any dietary restrictions, please specify on the application to ensure the food service provider is prepared to accommodate your needs. Contact us directly with any questions or concerns to

  • Where does FLEx take place?

    FLEx occurs both on campus at the University of New Haven and at a local off-campus retreat site. Transportation will be provided to the off-campus retreat site from main campus for participation in various aspects of the experience.

  • What is the schedule for FLEx?

    Students admitted to FLEx will receive detailed communication via email prior to arrival on campus, as well as a copy of the schedule upon check-in. Students should plan for an exciting, jam-packed 3-day experience.

  • How many students are selected to participate in FLEx?

    FLEx consists of two cohorts: FLEx Adventure will admit up to 70 students, and FLEx Success will admit up to 30 students.

  • If I am interested in both FLEx experiences, can I apply to both?

    Yes! You may apply to both FLEx cohorts on one application. However, if you are selected to participate, you will only be assigned to one cohort based on eligibility and availability.

  • How will participating in FLEx impact my Opening Day or Welcome Week experience?

    FLEx occurs before Opening Day and Welcome Week, so students will not miss out on any of the on campus activities.

  • What does move-in for FLEx consist of?

    All students participating in FLEx will receive detailed information about arrival logistics upon admittance. Family members of students accepted to the FLEx Success cohort are encouraged to stay for our student and family session on Friday August 13th directly following move-in/check-in.

  • If I apply to FLEx Success, do I have to participate in the SUCCESS Mentorship Program?

    No, but students are encouraged to participate in both. It will only help in your successful transition to the Charger Community and provide important tools to help successfully navigate the college experience!

  • What is the SUCCESS Mentorship Program?

    Students who are interested in participating the FLEx Success program are encourage to participate in our year long mentorship program. In this program, students will be paired with an upper year student mentor along with a faculty/staff/or alumni mentor. If you are interested in learning more about the program, indicate so on the application and the Director of Diversity and Inclusion will follow up with more information.

  • I am a fall sport athlete, in Marching Band, participating in Dream, or another pre-Charge In program.

    FLEx occurs parallel to pre-season training for many fall athletic teams, Marching Band training, DREAM Orientation, ROTC, as well as training for many on campus jobs. If you are involved in any of the listed experiences, or another pre-Charge In experience, we encourage you to check with your coaches or directors BEFORE applying to confirm scheduling conflicts.

  • I am a resident student, when would I move to campus?

    Resident students admitted to FLEx will move into their fall assignment on Friday, August 13. Specific times will be communicated via University of New Haven email.

  • Can commuters participate in FLEx or is this just for residential students?

    Yes! Commuter students are encouraged, if their schedule allows, to participate in FLEx. Detailed information regarding parking and scheduling will be emailed to students upon admittance.

  • I am a commuter student, how would I participate in FLEx?

    Commuter students admitted to FLEx would "commute" to main campus each day of the experience.

  • I am under 18, what type of permission do I need from a parent/guardian to participate?

    All participants will be required to complete a standard waiver of liability for participation in FLEx. Students under the age of 18 will also need the signature of a parent/guardian presented at check in.

  • What is the drug, alcohol and smoking policy for FLEx?

    FLEx is a 100% drug, alcohol, and smoke-free experience. If you violate this policy while participating in FLEx, you will go through the University’s conduct system and may be removed from the program depending on the circumstances. A copy of the University’s drug and smoke-free commitment can be reviewed here.

  • If selected, when do I need to clear all health or bursary holds from my account by?

    All “holds” must be cleared from a student's account (health and bursary) no later than 12:00 PM (noon) on Wednesday, August 11. Students admitted to participate should contact the Financial Aid and Health Services offices to verify all holds are cleared before traveling to campus.

  • What is the application/selection process for FLEx?

    Students interested in FLEx must submit an application using the link above. The application requires general information about the student (name, student ID number, email, whether they are a resident or commuter student for the fall, etc.) in addition to several short answer questions to address their interest and eligibility for the program. A committee of professional University staff members will review each application, and determine eligibility for the experience. Please note: each year the committee receives more applications than space is available, so students are encouraged to provide thoughtful, honest, and complete responses to each question prompt. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

  • What are the health and safety guidelines for program participants?

    FLEx students, upper class mentors, as well as faculty/staff administrators will follow all current health and safety guidelines outlined by the University, state of Connecticut, and CDC. Due to the evolving COVID-19 pandemic, guidelines can change at any time. Students will receive detailed communication via email prior to arrival on campus.


One credit elective course for students to explore leadership theory and concepts. Grounded in the University’s six areas of the CLE, students will hone their understanding of leadership and how to be effective leaders in their organizations, teams, communities, and careers. To check availability enroll in an upcoming section, please contact


Exclusive opportunity for undergraduate student leaders in their final year of study to reflect on developmental experiences and hone leadership skills prior to graduation. The experience’s immersive workshop series focuses on the University’s six areas of the CLE to ensure graduates are prepared to institute positive change and achieve success in future endeavors.

Leadership Day

Annual symposium for undergraduate and graduate student leaders. The experience consists of a keynote speaker and multiple educational sessions presented by students, faculty, staff, and outside speakers focused on a specific theme. The experience also provides the opportunity for students to engage with peers and establish connections with faculty and staff. The next Leadership Day is scheduled for Friday, February 18, 2022.