The labyrinth at the Mercy Center is a reflection
place for CDA participants during Course 3.


A Course 3 participant presents a group case study in fall 2013.

CD1 graduates

Fall 2013 Course 1 graduates gathered outside the Mercy Center in St. Louis.


Fall 2013 graduates of Course 3, Creating Capacity for Dynamic Communities.


Course 1 members participate in a ball and string activity that helps them reflect on their experience.


Participants in Course 1 present the results of their action planning process.


"The fishbone diagram" is a cause-and-effect process the Course 1 participants learn to use.


Participants engage in a group activity to learn collaboration concepts during Course 2.


Students learn about sustainable development tools at the cooperative market in Old North St. Louis.


In Course 2, participants learn about a thrift store as an economic generator in Old North St. Louis.


Course 3 participants make dresses out of pillowcases as a community development tool.


The finished product shown is a dress Course 3 participants made for

Learning to lead

2016 Academy brochure (PDF)

Community Development Academy is a series of three courses offered by the University of Missouri Community Development Extension Program. The Community Development Academy is an intensive, experiential, five-day course (for noncredit or for three hours undergraduate or graduate credit), which explores ideas and develops practical skills for effectively involving and empowering local citizens and leaders in community-based efforts.

These courses combine leading edge thinking with practical application methods to enhance the capacity of people to work effectively with a broad range of community issues. Each issue requires some form of decision-making process and implementation in the community arena beyond the individual, the family, or business firm.

This professional development experience provides a conceptual base and skills for successfully bringing people (often with diverse views and opinions) together around common issues, helping them learn how to deal collectively with their issues of concern, and giving purposeful direction to their own futures.

* The Community Development Academy Courses can be taken as part of the Community Process Graduate Certificate.

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