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Lott Leadership Institute
Motivate. Captivate. Inspire. Engage.

Undergraduate Students

New Leadership Endorsement for All Majors

The Trent Lott Leadership Institute in partnership with the Declaration of Independence Center for the Study of American Freedom and The Center for Practical Ethics is introducing a new leadership development opportunity beginning in January 2024 for members of our campus community.  The Leadership Endorsement is a series of four courses that prepare students to be effective, active, and ethical leaders. Students learn and understand the theory, philosophy, and practice of leadership, while also examining the moral frameworks and ethical issues that arise in many professions. Through this immersive study, students will be able to successfully develop their individual leadership skills to enhance their ability to lead.

Upon completion of the courses, students will receive a letter of endorsement that they can share with prospective employers or graduate programs regarding their in-depth leadership study and related competencies.


    • LIBA 199 (3 Hours) Introduction to the Theory of Leadership
    • PHIL 102 (3 Hours) Introduction to Professional Ethics
    • PHIL 354 (3 Hours) Ethical Leadership
    • LIBA 499 (3 Hours) Leadership in Practice

Students may begin the series of courses with either LIBA 199 or PHIL 102.  Students may contact Dr. Melissa Jones ( for more information.

About the Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy Leadership

The Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy Leadership, offered through the Lott Leadership Institute and College of Liberal Arts at the University of Mississippi, is an interdisciplinary program that trains students to enter careers in public service. The B.A. in Public Policy Leadership prepares high-performing students for positions of leadership in an increasingly complex world. The interdisciplinary curriculum for the major incorporates economics, geography, history, philosophy and political science. While at the Institute, students learn the leadership qualities necessary to formulate and implement public policy, the methodological skills necessary for policy analysis, and the ethics of leadership.

Students learn to appreciate the global nature of responsible decision-making. The Lott Institute offers students the benefits of a small institute—selective admission through a holistic process, challenging academic programming, small classes, and commitment faculty—with the advantages of a large public university—affordable tuition and a wide range of resources and opportunities.

The B.A. in Public Policy Leadership prepares students for a variety of career possibilities, including academia, law, government, nonprofit work, or the private sector. Graduates of the Institute are prepared to serve as leaders in their local communities, states, nations, and abroad.

“The Lott Leadership Institute offers a community of faculty, administration and supporters united to help students turn ideas into action.” Bill Gottshall, Executive Director

Application to the Lott Leadership Institute/Public Policy Leadership for Incoming Undergraduate Students

To be considered for admission to the Public Policy Leadership degree program, students must first apply to the University by completing the University of Mississippi online application. Once admitted to the University, access to the Special Programs and Scholarships Application will become available. Complete this application to be considered for admission to the Lott Leadership Institute. The deadline for application to the program is January 10, 2024.

Admission to the Lott Leadership Institute/Public Policy Leadership for Transfer/Current Undergraduate Students through the Accelerated Policy & Leadership Studies Program (APLS)

A program of the Department of Public Policy Leadership, offered through partnership of The University of Mississippi’s Lott Leadership Institute and College of Liberal Arts, the APLS program allows students who have already completed substantial portions of their general education requirements to complete the PPL major in two years.

In order to enter the APLS program/major in Public Policy Leadership, interested students must fill out the Application to the Accelerated Policy & Leadership Studies Program. All applications, letters of recommendation, and recommendation forms should be sent to the Lott Leadership Institute, or emailed to Dr. Melissa Jones (

Students accepted into the APLS program will be added to PPL 101 and the additional class they indicate on their application (as space allows) for the semester indicated on their application.

Note: Before applying to the program, transfer students must apply for undergraduate admission to The University of Mississippi.


      • Stay on track to graduate while earning internship experience in Washington, D.C.
      • Enrich yourself in new cultures and policy approaches while studying abroad
      • Network with guest speakers from various career fields and institutions.

Jenna Santacroce

Transfer Student, Former Phi Theta Kappa VP Makes Waves at UM

Jenna Santacroce’s path to the University of Mississippi might look a little different than most students, but her success here inspires other students transferring to UM to aim big. Before coming to Oxford, Santacroce was a student at Bergen Community College in New Jersey, where she was the president of the honors college, the vice president of Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society, and founder of a sustainability association. It was her position in Phi Theta Kappa that ultimately brought her to Mississippi, as she would travel to Jackson’s PTK headquarters to receive training for national …

Read more…


Semester 1

  • PPL 101: Foundations of Public Policy Leadership
  • (if Fall Start): Either
    • PPL 210: Quantitative Analysis & Public Policy; or
    • PPL 212: Critical Thinking, Communication, & Public Policy

Semester 2

  • (if Semester 1 was Fall): Either (whichever class not completed in Semester 1)
    • PPL 210: Quantitative Analysis & Public Policy; or
    • PPL 212: Critical Thinking, Communication, & Public Policy
  • PPL 300: Ethics and Public Policy
  • PPL elective

Semester 3

  • PPL 310: Policy Design & Analysis
  • PPL elective
  • PPL elective

Semester 4

  • PPL elective
  • PPL elective
  • PPL elective


  • Students enrolled in the APLS program must complete Pol 101 (Introduction to American Politics), Econ 202 (Principles of Microeconomics), and Econ 203 (Principles of Macroeconomics) by the beginning of Semester 3 of the program
  • APLS students must also complete the general education requirements for a Bachelor of Arts from the College of Liberal Arts before applying for graduation
  • PPL majors must complete at least one (1) domestic policy elective class, one (1) international policy elective class, and one (1) leadership/organization elective class
  • PPL 402 and 403 (Thesis I & II) may be put towards completion of two (2) of the required elective classes
  • PPL 499 (Internship) may be put towards completion of one (1) of the required electives
  • Participation in the Washington, D.C. Experience (PPL 490, 497, and 499) may be applied for the fourth semester of the program, allowing students to take an additional non-PPL class in Semester 3