About Us

About Us

How did it start?


The César E. Chávez Leadership Institute (CCLI) was established in 1995 by a group of ASU and community leaders seeking to inspire and motivate high school students through the legacy of César E. Chávez. The goal of the Institute was to prepare a cadre of young leaders to participate fully in the civic, economic and cultural life of their community.


The ASU César E. Chávez Leadership Institute recognizes the importance of increasing the number of Arizona youth attending institutions of higher learning. The Institute gives high school students the means to explore their educational potential and leadership development skills.


  • Encourage the pursuit of higher education as a vehicle for self-improvement and future leadership roles.
  • Identify, develop, and strengthen leadership skills for Arizona youth.
  • Educate each participant on their importance to the growth and development of Arizona.
  • Grow participant’s respect for self and others.


Every summer, the CCLI hosts a group of high school students from across the state for a week-long program of leadership training on the ASU campus. The program provides students with an in-depth experience that will increase their understanding of higher education and community engagement.

Community leaders make presentations and address issues identified by the students during open-forum discussions. Students attend the program at no cost to their families.

The César E. Chávez Leadership Institute program collaborates with the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, Student Life, the Multicultural Student Center, the School of Transborder Studies, and the Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law to bring over 100 years of expertise to the program.

The Leadership Institute provides students with a one-of-a-kind experience by embracing tolerance, recognizing academic and personal success, and establishing the importance of community service. 

The program is recognized statewide by members of the Arizona State Legislature and the Hispanic Caucus, Los Abogados, Chicanos Por La Causa, Valle del Sol, Aguila Youth Symposium, Be A Leader Foundation, and AZCAN. The leadership institute is a no cost program for participants because of the generous contributions of the Helios Education Foundation, Arizona Republic/12 News Season of Sharing, SRP, and Arizona State University.

The legacy, leadership, and spirit of César Chávez forms the foundation of the program. With the support of the César E. Chávez Foundation, members of the Chávez family, and the efforts of ASU staff, volunteers, and alumni of the ASU César E. Chávez Leadership Institute, the pursuit of higher education and movement for social justice through education and community engagement lives on.

¡Sí Se Puede!