Programs and Services


The LEAP Center offers numerous programs and opportunities to motivated students throughout the year. The purpose of these programs is to help students learn academic and professional skills, expand professional networks, and broaden experiences.

Programs include guest speakers, workshops, and events in the fields of law, politics, civic engagement, fine arts, literature, and other academic fields.  Past examples of such events include:

  • 10th Texas Court of Appeals Oral Arguments
  • Texas Supreme Court Oral Arguments
  • Mock Law Class
  • Mock LSAT
  • Workshops on Civic Engagement and Campaigns
  • Seminars on Law, Politics, Government, Non-Profits, and other Public-Service Careers
  • heART of Huntsville
  • Moot Court Team
  • Pre-Law Freshman Living-Learning Community

In addition, the Center facilitates field trips to see public figures in Houston, Dallas, Austin, and College Station.  Consistent with the mission to expand student's learning in all fields, past examples include speakers from broad disciplines:

  • Physicist Stephen Hawking
  • CNN Political Analyst Bill Schneider
  • Actor Alan Alda
  • President Barack Obama
  • Author Douglas Brinkley

In the spirit of broadening horizons, the LEAP Center also makes travel a centerpiece of its mission.  In the past several years, LEAP Center students have traveled to more than twenty states. Trips include:

  • Attendance at professional conferences in Austin, New Orleans, and Madison, Wisconsin
  • Participation in Presidential and Gubernatorial Inaugurations
  • Experiential learning by working on state campaigns in Missouri, Arkansas, and Louisiana

With the mission of civic engagement, the LEAP Center also spearheads numerous opportunities for public service.  The Center prides itself on providing public service opportunities that produce genuine benefits to the community.  Examples include:

  • The County U Program
  • The Citizenship Preparatory Course
  • Professional workshops for students and community members
  • Assistance with University and community events


The LEAP Center oversees both the University's Austin Internship Program as well as the Political Science Department's Internship Program.  Both programs seek top students from all majors to gain crucial professional, occupational, and technical skills while representing the University in the workplace.  Both internships rely on a competitive selection process and both give students the opportunity to earn academic credit while working outside the University. Students can learn about the different internship programs by visiting the Austin Internship Program website, the Political Science Internship Program website, or the Woodforest Internship Program website.

Advising Services:

In addition, LEAP Center staff also provide pre-law advising, academic advising services to students majoring or minoring in Political Science or minoring in Legal Studies, and advising to those students pursuing careers in political or law-related fields.  For advisement, contact Mike Yawn at or Jean Loveall at or, preferably, set up an appointment through Campus Connect (which is in My Sam).