The Emerging Leader Program provides recognition for the broad range of experiences and skills that you develop during your time at university and will help you stand out when you apply for graduate roles. Activities such as participation in a club or society, volunteer work in the community, overseas study tours, internships, placements, and even your part time job can be recognised within the program and will be formally documented on your academic transcript.

The Emerging Leader Program helps translate your experiences into the skills that all employers are looking for and will assist you to reach your career goals. The best bit? The Emerging Leader Program is available for all Swinburne students (on campus and online) and it doesn't cost a thing.

The program is diverse and inclusive, and we encourage active participation in inclusive activities across all certificates.

By participating in the program, you will: 

  • have your achievements formally recognised on your final academic transcript 
  • learn how to confidently communicate your skills to employers in interviews 
  • improve your employability and stand out from other graduates.

Interested in joining the Emerging Leader Program?

Register for the program as an Australian campus student or a Swinburne Online student using your student ID and password.

Register or log in now
Are you a Sarawak student?

Register here to participate in the Swinburne Emerging Leader Program as a Swinburne Sarawak student. Already registered? Log in as a Swinburne Sarawak student. Forgotten your password? Click here to reset it.

How does it work? 

Complete four out of the eight categories, including Career Development, and demonstrate six of the 10 employability skills to achieve Emerging Leader status.

Further information about the range of activities that you can include, examples of STAR reflections and details of any upcoming webinars is available here.

Leadership categories

The Career Development category is mandatory. You must complete at least five career development activities to pass this category. Choose activities that develop your career management skills.

Examples of relevant activities
  • attendance at Careers and Employability workshops and seminars
  • Career Start – complete any two modules to receive credit for one activity or the whole 10 Career Start program to receive credit for all five career development activities
  • career development planning or appointment with a Career Consultant
  • professional development workshops or events
  • participation in an industry mentoring program
  • attendance at industry networking events
  • registration with a relevant professional association
  • Professional Purpose – complete stage 1 to receive credit for one career development activity
  • Study Smarter – complete the self-paced learning module 1.9 to receive credit for one career development activity
  • LAS Workshops: 'Getting ready for the workplace' series (selected topics).

You must complete at least 40 hours working, volunteering, or actively contributing to Swinburne or for the benefit of Swinburne students to pass this category.

Examples of relevant activities
  • student mentor
  • volunteering at Swinburne, such as orientation volunteer
  • student council representative
  • student ambassador
  • Student Learning Assistant (SLA)
  • study group leader
  • MTC on country development program (20 hours)
  • active group, club, or society member
  • active participation in Back on Track study support sessions
  • Swinburne Student Union
  • develop or participate in Leadership Hub projects (initiated by students for students)
  • Swinburne Online Student Community Leader Program
  • Swinburne Online Mentor Program – Swinburne Online Mentors can gain automatic recognition if they complete two teaching periods of mentoring.

You must complete at least 40 hours of volunteer service for the benefit of the broader community to pass this category.

Examples of relevant activities
  • social enterprise projects
  • participation in the Student Life Volunteer Program
  • charity or not-for-profit fundraising
  • active in the organisation of a club or community group such as a sports club, cultural group, or charity
  • club or community group leader (president, secretary, captain)
  • volunteering for your local council, welfare, charitable and not-for-profit organisations.

You must complete at least 40 hours learning about or supporting diversity and inclusion. This activity can be within Swinburne or wider community.

Examples of relevant activities
  • volunteer or active participation in a community group that supports diversity and inclusion, e.g. World Kitchen events, Pride @Swinburne, Youth Humanitarian Festival, student clubs, Moondani Toombadool Centre events
  • raise funds for groups from a diversity background, e.g. Beyond Blue, refugees
  • participation in a migrant-focused project or program within the community or at Swinburne, e.g. Bridging with Books
  • Swinburne Scanlon Intercultural Fellowship.

You must complete at least 50 hours in an international activity and clearly articulate how you have contributed to becoming a global citizen and the skills you have developed.

Examples of relevant activities
  • study abroad and exchange
  • overseas program with an educational, sustainability, or humanitarian focus
  • interactive project with an international partner
  • international student studying in Australia
  • migrants, refugees, or asylum seekers.

You must complete at least 50 hours in a workplace setting to meet the criteria for the Industry Experience category. This can include working remotely and online. Your experience does not need to relate to your field of study.

Examples of relevant activities
  • full time, part-time, casual, vacation paid or unpaid employment
  • an internship
  • professional placement or accreditation placement.

You must participate in substantial research which involves academic research methodology and key design concepts. You can work with a research group or on a designated research project to pass the Research category. General research conducted within a unit of study does not count as sufficient research for this certificate.

Examples of relevant activities
  • a final year research project that includes academic research methodology and key research design components
  • research cadetship
  • position as a research assistant.

You must complete at least 30 hours of cocurricular or extra-curricular sustainable activities to meet the criteria for the Sustainability category. 

Examples of relevant activities
  • specialised programs with a sustainability focus
  • volunteer activities in conservation
  • community projects that support and promote sustainability
  • local or regional council volunteering
  • sustainability training.
Swinburne Actions for Sustainability Impact (SA4SI) Program

Swinburne Actions for Sustainability Impact (SA4SI) Program

As part of the Swinburne Community, what actions will you take to deliver the Sustainable Development Goals?


  • You can count an activity once only within the program
  • All activities must be undertaken whilst a Swinburne student and within two years (activities can be either on or off campus).

Identify your skills

Once you’ve completed your activities for a leadership category, consider the skills you have demonstrated and the examples you might give to a future employer. Choose one or more of the skills below and write a reflection using the STAR format (situation, task, action, result).

Your reflection must:

  • be 200 to 300 words in length 
  • provide an example of how you have enhanced and demonstrated your skills whilst undertaking your activities
  • describe how your learnings can help you in the future. 

You will also need to provide a 50-word summary in a format that you can add to your resume.

To complete the Emerging Leader Program, you will need to demonstrate six skills across your four categories.

Identify one or two of the following skills for each category completed:

  • building a positive self-image and ability to interact effectively with others in a professional setting or for a professional purpose
  • accessing and effectively utilising career information; developing and working towards career learning goals and plans
  • identifying and developing skills to make informed career decisions, access opportunities and enhance your career.
  • working cooperatively and collaboratively with others in a group to achieve a common goal or outcome
  • individuals or organisations working together to solve problems and achieve outcomes that are not easily or effectively achieved by working alone.
  • collecting and summarising data into a manageable form
  • analysis to determine what happened and why it happened
  • your learning about research from this experience and how these learnings can assist you in your future career.
  • identifying problem and working towards a practical solution through trial-and-error or a range of strategies
  • having creative ideas and using critical thinking to tackle unfamiliar or complex problems.
  • verbal – listening, understanding, and speaking directly and clearly
  • written – reading, writing, understanding, and interpreting information to meet your audience's needs
  • interpersonal – connecting with people, working in a team, and building rapport with others.
  • showing independence and being proactive in your approach to career and life
  • adapting easily to new situations – change as an opportunity for growth and development
  • innovation and creativity to generate new ideas or alternative perspectives that may be useful in solving problems, improving communication, and entertaining or inspiring others.
  • ability to understand and accept change within a workplace, e.g. creating a new process to effectively perform a task
  • ability to implement a process to solve an unfamiliar problem.
  • willing to learn in any setting
  • a lifelong commitment to learning and seeing the value in past experiences and recognising new opportunities to grow
  • being prepared to invest the time and effort to gain more knowledge and develop new skills
  • ability to influence others toward the achievement of a goal
  • making use of self-reflection to review your strengths and weaknesses and to set clear goals and responsibilities
  • knowledge and confidence in your own ideas and vision, and not being afraid to show leadership potential
  • adapting positively to a situation despite facing adversity
  • coping with stress and adjusting to challenging circumstances
  • ability to rebound from stress in the face of challenge.


Teaching Period 1 and Semester 1 (2024): 11 June 2024

Teaching Period 2: 8 October 2024

Semester 2: 12 November 2024

Please ensure you submit at least three weeks prior to the end of your semester or teaching period.

Submit your leadership category applications before you complete your course to ensure your program achievements appear on your academic transcript at the time of your graduation.

Academic transcripts will be updated throughout the year.

Need further assistance?

If you need help or have any questions about your Emerging Leader Program application, contact the team today.

Email us