Participants are nominated by individuals associated with Florida agriculture, natural resources, or related areas to be considered for participation in the Wedgworth Leadership Institute.
To be eligible for selection, each applicant must:
- Be a citizen of the U.S. and a resident of Florida for one year at the time of application date deadline
- Earn a substantial percentage of his/her livelihood from Florida agriculture, natural resources or related areas
- Demonstrate strong leadership potential
- Nominations are provided from people associated with Florida agriculture, natural resources and related areas.
- Nominations for Class XII are expected to open for in Spring 2023.
- Each nominee is contacted and encouraged to complete an online application.
- Applications are initially screened by the program staff.
- All qualified applicants and spouses are required to attend one regional selection seminar for further orientation. Additional screening information will be required from the applicant during this meeting.
- Selection seminars will take place in Summer 2023 at various locations throughout the state.
- Each semi-finalist may receive a personal interview. References provided will be contacted.
- Based on the pool of semi-finalists, reasonable representation within each class will be sought from the standpoint of geographical location, range in age, and diversity of Florida agriculture, natural resources and related areas. Up to 30 men and women will be invited to participate in each class.
- To become a participant, each invitee must provide both verbal and written acceptance by a designated date.
Participant Selection Criteria
Particpants are selected based upon the following criteria:
- An individual must first be nominated by a recognized leader of Florida agriculture, natural resources, and/or related areas to be considered in the selection process.
- Applicants must be a citizen of the United States and a resident of Florida for at least one year at the time of the application date deadline.
- Each applicant must be committed to an occupation in the form of an owner operator, or employee with a substantial percentage of his/her financial livelihood coming from Florida agriculture, natural resources, and/or related areas.
- Each applicant must demonstrate ability to be away from his/her enterprise for the necessary amounts of time. For the first year, this is projected for about 25 days of seminars and/or travel, and 30 days in the second year. The applicant must provide written concurrence of his/her enterprise, business associate(s), or employer.
- Each candidate will be evaluated on evidence of demonstrated leadership qualities plus potential qualities as evidenced by community, state, national, international levels of involvement, or other activities as shown on the application.
- Each candidate will be evaluated in terms of the applicant’s possible (probable) contribution to Florida agriculture, natural resources, and/or related areas through growth experiences gained from the program.
- The candidate will be evaluated on evidence that the nature and scope of his/her concerns range beyond self-interest and/or narrow perspectives.
- Each candidate will be evaluated in terms of his/her likelihood to grow as an individual during the two-year experience.
- The applicant’s character, reputation and personal life, as evidenced by references and/or by inquiry in the industry, must be of high quality and reflect potential leadership capability.
- The applicant must be fully committed to participate in all of the study/travel seminars.
- No specific academic achievement in terms of high school or college training is required for participation. Each candidate will be considered in terms of potential ability to participate meaningfully in the seminars and his/her commitment to life-long learning.
- Reasonable representation within each class will be sought from the standpoint of geographical location, range of age, and diversity of Florida agriculture, natural resources, and/or related areas.
- The candidate’s several responses on the application regarding reasons for wishing to participate in the program, and the applicant’s verbal and written comments on problems facing his/her community, state, and nation must show logic and breadth of thought as well as sincerity.
- An applicant not selected for a previous class must be renominated in writing and complete an application for the upcoming class.
- Applications from spouses or brothers/sisters will not be accepted for the same class. Applications will be returned from close relatives for a decision of which one will apply for the upcoming class.
- All persons are considered without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, or disability.