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Business and Community Leadership Fellows

The Business and Community Leadership Fellows (BCLF) program develops undergraduate business students into impact-driven leaders who understand and are committed to the intersection of business and community.


The BCLF program recognizes the overarching aspiration of the Darla Moore School of Business and its students to be business leaders who are also valued contributors engaged in meaningful, lifelong community service. The BCLF program assumes that businesses — and students of business — have a social responsibility to work collaboratively to improve their communities. The BCLF also assumes that this work should be a lifelong commitment that is fully integrated into both the ambitions of business students as well as the missions of the businesses they represent.

Program background

The BCLF program is a comprehensive three-year experience designed to develop undergraduate business majors into leaders who are knowledgeable about and committed to the needs of their communities. This program provides select students with the unique opportunity to engage in substantial ways with business and social service leaders who understand the value the interconnectedness of business and community service. The primary goal of this program is for each fellow to develop tangible and intangible leadership skills that he or she can use to make positive impacts in the Carolina community and beyond.

BCLF students work directly with executives from BB&T, the United Way and other business and community partners to engage in extensive, meaningful service. In addition to hands-on volunteerism, successful BCLF students will have the opportunity to:

  • Network with and be mentored by business and community leaders.
  • Complete the BB&T Emerging Community Leadership Development course.
  • Complete the United Way Board Member Development course.
  • Take special topics Moore School courses in Corporate Social Responsibility and Business Communications.
  • Earn credit towards USC's Graduation with Leadership Distinction.

Selection of BCLF students

Undergraduate fellows are selected through a competitive application and interview process. The inaugural class will have the chance to set the tone for future BCLF cohorts.

Although the selection committee will look at traditional measures such as GPA (a minimum 3.0 is required), the BCLF program will give priority to business students who have demonstrated a commitment and passion for community service and volunteerism prior to college and in their first year at USC.

Four-year calendar for inaugural cohort

Freshman year (Fall 2016 - Spring 2017)

  • Complete your application by May 15, 2017.
  • Demonstrate your commitment to community leadership by engaging in a variety of volunteer service activities. The most competitive BCLF applicants will have completed at least 60 hours of community service during their freshman year. The Community Service Verification Form may be used to track hours of community service. Potential applicants are encouraged to explore volunteer opportunities through USC's Leadership and Service Center and other sources. 

Sophomore year

  • Participate in substantial immersive work in one community agency. (Undergraduate fellows will be assigned to work in one of several areas that best suits their talents and interests including Education and Children, Health and Wellness, Hunger and Homelessness, and others.)
  • Off-site lectures, facility tours of businesses that are highly engaged with the Columbia community. (e.g. BCBS host an on-site workshop)
  • Fall: Take required course — Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Spring: Take MGMT 250 — Business Communication (Business and Community Leadership special topic section).

Junior year

  • Implement and lead a specific project for your selected agency.
  • Complete Emerging Community Leadership Development course sponsored by BB&T.
  • Eligible students will have an opportunity to enroll in BADM 499 for internship and course credit.

Senior year

  • Serve as a mentor for subsequent BCLF students.
  • Complete Board Member Development course sponsored by United Way.
  • Give a presentation of program experience.

For more information, please contact Brad Stratton at