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Learn and Lead

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UWCSEA is preparing students to become leaders in shaping a better, more sustainable future, and we recognise that skills in both leadership and teamwork are vital. From the youngest child on campus to the oldest, each student has age-appropriate opportunities to explore and develop these skills through all aspects of the learning programme. However, through the Activities programme, students can participate in organised leadership teams, where they focus on these skills and provide guidance for their peers and younger students.

From Student Councils to Sports Councils to Global Concerns Executives, students are elected by their peers to provide leadership and guidance in the school community. Ambassadors work with the counsellors to help ensure that other students transition well both in and out of College and are happy during their time there. Groups such as Model United Nations give students the opportunity to put forward their ideas in constructive ways and to interact with students from other international schools. Student-led publications give students the chance to lead a complex process of compiling and editing yearbooks and other publications. All these activities, and more, ensure that UWCSEA students get plenty of experience in leadership.

Alumni Council

Grade 11 students have the opportunity to assist the UWCSEA Alumni Office as part of the fulfilment for the CAS requirement for the IB Diploma. In their role on the Alumni Council, they take part in a number of different activities such as planning reunions, welcoming alumni back to the College, tracing alumni, researching social networks, suggesting opportunities for the alumni to network online and opportunities for UWCSEA to better develop the alumni programme. The Alumni Council members volunteer their time and typically gain experience in both teamwork and developing new initiatives.


The Ambassadors are a group of Middle and High School students who help to support fellow students through transitions as well as to welcome special groups and visitors to campus. The transition support is provided to new students entering the College as well as to those who are leaving UWCSEA. Students work together to plan and shape the work of the ambassadors for the year.

Global Concerns Executives

From Junior School through High School, student leaders help to oversee Global Concerns (GC) initiatives and activities. Global Concerns offer students the opportunity to conceive, plan, organise and execute events as well as enhancing their education about issues relevant to contemporary challenges and the College's mission. GC projects develop social and other organisational skills through empowering students to organise and run events, and to realise that their success depends on their own efforts.

Students are encouraged to establish their own initiatives, which they present to the Global Concerns Executive student-managed committee for approval. All proposals are required to conform to agreed criteria and aspiring GC groups present their proposals to their peers who run the programme. These responsibilities assist students to acquire skills of leadership, negotiation, planning, organisation and teamwork.

Initiative for Peace

Initiative for Peace (IfP) was founded in 2001 by a group of UWCSEA students and teachers. An action-based programme, it extends beyond the UWC movement and offers students an opportunity to actively promote international understanding and reconciliation in areas of conflict through leading youth conferences. The IfP conferences bring together youths from two sides of a conflict to work on conflict management with the aim of creating permanent youth-led conflict management organisations around the world.

As a direct result of the inaugural Focus on Kashmir conference in June 2002, the first organisation, Youth Initiative for Peace, was established in India and Pakistan. In recent years, the conferences have focused on Timor Leste and Sri Lanka. 2013 marked the first year with IfP groups on both our campuses with combined teams going to Timor Leste and Sri Lanka.

UWCSEA IfP participants spend a year planning and organising every detail of the conference, including sending out applications, selecting participants, planning the conference programme and activities, finding speakers and raising funds. They then facilitate and run the conference, supported by UWCSEA staff.

Model United Nations

Model United Nations (MUN) provides the opportunity for students to better understand the workings of the United Nations (UN) as they take on the role of delegates from particular countries, with the exception of their home country. Students represent the interests of their allocated country in specific committees (e.g., Environmental Committee, Political Committee, Human Rights Committee, Security Council) whilst they negotiate with other 'countries' to reach agreements on key issues. These issues are then carried forward to the General Assembly forum where they are debated further. Students have the opportunity to refine their skills in negotiating and public speaking as they caucus with other delegations and put forward resolutions in the public arena.

Participation in MUN challenges students to become up-to-date with current world issues and international politics, and provides an outstanding opportunity for students to engage with their peers from other schools and countries around the region and further afield. The experiences can be challenging and often confronting, all of which prepares students for the trials that lie ahead in university and beyond.

National Youth Achievement Award

A prestigious, internationally recognised award, the National Youth Achievement Award (NYAA) maximises the potential of young people through selfless community service, skills development, sport and challenges of adventure. The aim of the NYAA programme is to encourage young people between the ages of 14 and 25 years to develop personal qualities of self-reliance, perseverance and a sense of responsibility to themselves and to society. It is a balanced programme of activities, which together support participants with the skills and dispositions that will help them to make a difference to themselves and to the world. The programme is a natural fit with the mission and values of UWCSEA, and it was introduced to students in 2008. Learn more.

Round Square Committees

Being a Round Square school provides the opportunity for Middle and High School students to be involved in a variety of ways:

  • representing the College at annual Australasian Conferences
  • representing the College at the annual International Conferences
  • going on a Round Square international service project trip during a holiday
  • participating in an exchange programme with another Round Square school

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Sports Councils

The student-led Sports Councils on each campus support the Sports, Activities and Physical Education Departments with their events and activities. With over 50 fixtures each week and many events at the weekend, it is a task of some magnitude to run and promote them to the UWCSEA community and support all the athletes involved. Students on the Sports Council are typically in High School.

With large sporting events such as SEASAC, ACSIS and invitational badminton, gymnastics, hockey, football or rugby events, the Sports Council runs the table, announces scores and recruits helpers. They have assisted in lunchtime events for tutor/mentor groups, organised their own family floorball tournament, raised money for their own Sports Council Global Concern project, helped with campus events such as the Swim 4 Life challenge, and the PA family hash event, among others.

Student Councils

The Junior, Middle and High Schools on each campus have a Student Council elected by their peers to facilitate and maintain communication between the student body, staff and the administration of the College; to discuss and act on ideas and initiatives presented by members of the Council, the students and staff; and to promote College ideals and values by adopting a leadership role within the College. Regular meetings are held throughout the year, with elections taking place towards the end of Term 1 of the school year. Participation in Student Council allows students to develop skills such as leadership and teamwork.

Student-led publications

Students have numerous opportunities to publish and contribute to various publications while also participating in all the functions needed to successfully produce a publication. Student-led publications include yearbooks, creative writing publications, economics journals, news and more. Based on interest and demand, new publications and media may be added to the range of offerings.