Leadership Ventures

Leadership Ventures are experiences that facilitate self-discovery, leadership, and character development. Participants are able to step out of their comfort zone, exceed personal limitations, and experience leadership firsthand.

WLV programs provide a set of engaged, hands-on experiences for exploring and mastering the capabilities for effective individual and team leadership in business and beyond.

To view the slides from the September 7, 2022, info session, please click here

All applications are submitted through Terra Dotta. The application cycles run in September (for fall intensives and all expeditions) and February (for spring intensives).

The defining characteristics of a Venture include:

  • Limited distractions
  • Immersion event — limited opportunities to quit or exit
  • Critical decision-making — the outcome is dependent on the decisions of the leader of the day and the team
  • Authentic uncertainty —path/process to goal or outcome is not guaranteed, risk of failure is inherent
  • Opportunities of stress — from ambiguity, risk of failure, conflict, and unfamiliar roles and responsibilities
  • Expedition and goal-oriented with many opportunities for reflection

There are two types of Leadership Ventures: Expeditions and Intensives.

2023-24 Venture Portfolio


Expeditions are outdoor, experiential learning treks that provide genuine environments of uncertainty and challenge. Expeditions generally range from 6 to 8 day overnight trips and can be high in physical intensity.Save

The calendar of Undergraduate WLV Expeditions for 2023-24 is as follows:

Patagonia TrekkingCerro Castillo, ChileWinter BreakBackcountry Trekking, route finding, river crossing, horseback riding, and tent camping
EcuadorSpring BreakMore info coming soon!


Intensives are consolidated and immersive group based experiences ranging from 1-2 days. They provide genuine environments of uncertainty and challenge.

With a minimal time commitment and cost, intensives, are an ideal way to add to your leadership portfolio as an undergraduate at Wharton.  Some opportunities gained by attending an intensive include:

  • Potential for self-discovery and character building
  • Testing your personal leadership style and building on your strengths through feedback
  • Enhancing management skills and team performance by increasing knowledge and skills that govern small group behavior dynamics

The calendar of Undergraduate WLV Intensives for 2023-24 is as follows:

Team SailingAnnapolis, MDFall & SpringSailing Skills, Leadership, Communication
Gunks Traverse Mountain BikingMohonk Preserve, NYFall & SpringMountain Biking, Team Cohesion, Decision Making, Navigation
High Ropes Challenge CoursePhiladelphia, PAFall & SpringHigh Ropes, Leadership & Reaction, Team Building, Communication

Financial Assistance

Wharton students receiving financial aid from Penn may be eligible for financial assistance for Wharton Leadership Ventures (WLV) to attend an Expedition.

Please note that financial assistance for WLV is coordinated by Wharton Leadership Ventures and not Student Financial Services.  Wharton Leadership Ventures are co-curricular experiences, not credit-bearing, therefore any financial assistance granted through the generosity of the McNulty Leadership Program for WLV will NOT be noted in students’ acceptance letters.

Before indicating your financial need in your application, PLEASE READ ALL INFORMATION BELOW. Contact Erica Montemayor with any questions emont@wharton.upenn.edu.

The McNulty Leadership Program will provide a limited number of scholarship seats for the winter break Patagonia expedition and spring break Ecuador expedition. Scholarships cover the registration costs for the expedition only. Scholarships DO NOT include flights and gear. If awarded a scholarship, you will be responsible for all costs associated with flights, and gear.

In order to be considered for a scholarship, please indicate so in your pre-decision paperwork in your expedition application. Applications will be reviewed and verified by the Undergraduate Financial Aid office, based on previously submitted financial information. Questions about financial aid eligibility should be directed to the Undergraduate Financial Aid office.

Candidates eligible for full scholarships will be notified of their status prior to being offered a seat on a Venture. If you are not eligible for a scholarship, you will be notified and can chose to accept or decline a seat offer on a Venture, if offered. If you are not awarded a scholarship seat, and you accept a seat offer on a Venture, you will be agreeing to full payment for the seat.  We ask that students only apply for a scholarship if that’s the only way one could attend an expedition.

If you do not initially win a scholarship seat but have been notified as eligible, you will be placed on the scholarship waitlist.

WLV Undergraduate Ventures

WLV Undergraduate Intensives

More Venture Resources

Financial Aid

Scholarships for the Leadership Ventures are awarded annually for expedition-based Ventures. Only initial Terra Dotta registrants will be eligible for the Scholarship.

Policies and FAQs

In the Terra Dotta registration system, students should input their true preferences for all ventures.

We are here to help.

We encourage you to speak to any Venture Fellow or Associate Director Erica Montemayor.


Apply for a Fellowship

Venture Fellows are comprised of Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors who serve as student leaders on expeditions and intensives.  Prior participation in a Wharton Leadership Venture is not necessary to become a fellow.



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