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Community Leadership and Civic Engagement Major


The Make a Difference Major: Community Leadership and Civic Engagement

Community Leadership and Civic Engagement (CLCE) was created for students who want to make a difference in the world, but want a paying career as well.

The CLCE major is one-of-a-kind in Illinois and among only a select few in the United States. It is interdisciplinary, meaning that students are exposed to a wide variety of topics such as sociology, public administration, and business. Working closely with faculty, students take part in hands-on community projects to build professional experience while applying lessons learned in the classroom.

What Jobs Are Available? 

Graduates pursue rewarding careers in the public and nonprofit sectors. Many jobs found in the nonprofit sector are nearly identical to those in governmental and business sectors. 

The nonprofit sector is one of the fastest growing job sectors in the United States and offers a wide variety of career opportunities.

Students choose one of the following emphasis areas within the major to customize their learning experience while finishing the degree requirements.

Areas of Emphasis:

See Degree Requirements >

student volunteersMaking a Difference

Our students get involved! A group of CLCE students directly contributed to a successful grant application that brought in $8.5 million for a local library. Others regularly take part in campus service groups such as Helping Hands, National PanHellenic Council, Circle K, We Care 4 NIU, and the CLCE SA.


CLCE students are encouraged to take part in internships, which can be completed for course credit. 

student internshipExamples include Noi, who interned at the United Nations; Isabelle, who interned with PEACE Mexico; and Amanda, who served as a  congressional intern in the U.S. House of Representatives.

International Perspective

Students often choose to study abroad, like Jacob, who studied in Indonesia while earning course credit that was applied to the CLCE major.