The Interfaith Leadership Institute (ILI) is a three day gathering and training for undergraduates and educators who want to create positive, meaningful connections between people of different faiths, traditions, and worldviews.

The ILI provides a special experience where hundreds come together to learn, build new skills, and forge friendships with diverse allies from the campus interfaith movement. Participants come from colleges and universities across the country, representing their schools as individuals or delegations. Over three days together, they hear from dynamic speakers, take part in trainings and workshops organized by flexible learning tracks, and forge friendships with diverse individuals that last long beyond a single weekend.

Everyone comes with their campus’ unique challenges and opportunities in mind and leaves energized and equipped to create impact back home. No matter your worldview or your level of experience, the ILI can help you galvanize interfaith cooperation on your campus and think about 21st century leadership in a whole new way.

Explore what the ILI has in Store for You

More Details

Who can come to an ILI?

Any undergraduate student, graduate student, or educator at a college or university within the United States is eligible to attend. With the new structure to our ILI training rooms, it is no longer a requirement that educators come to the ILI with students. Please note that graduate students are considered the same as educators at IFYC and cannot register for student tracks. This is because graduate students often serve in advising capacities to undergraduate students and our student tracks are designed with undergraduate student experiences in mind.
While educators are welcome to attend without their students, IFYC recommends that campuses bring multiple students and educators to the ILI so that when you return to campus, you have a network already established to implement the skills gained. For this reason, we have removed the cap on delegation size. Furthermore, we recommend sending a diversity of students and educators from various faiths, worldviews, and traditions, majors, and time spent involved with interfaith cooperation.

With seven tracks to choose from (four for students and three for educators) we want to make sure you get the most out of this ILI experience!

Please be in touch with your IFYC contact directly or email if you have questions regarding the number of people to bring and strategies regarding who you should bring to an ILI from your campus.

Location, Schedule & Registration Fees

Location Information: We’re excited to hold the 2018 ILI in beautiful Chicago, Illinois: where IFYC was founded and one of the most religiously diverse cities in the world.

2018 Chicago Interfaith Leadership Institute


When Where Registration Opens
August 3-5 Holiday Inn Chicago Mart Plaza

350 Wolf Point Plaza

Chicago, IL 60654
March 2018

An easy way to understand interfaith cooperation is to picture it as a triangle made up of attitudes, knowledge and relationships. According to social science research, relationships, positive attitudes and appreciative knowledge are closely related to each other such that an increase in one leads to an increase in the others. If you know some accurate and positive things about a religion, and you know some people from that religion, you are far more likely to have positive attitudes towards that tradition and that community. The more favorable your attitude, the more open you will be to new relationships and the more likely you are to seek out appreciative knowledge. Effective interfaith work creates space for people to move around the triangle, helping them to grow in each of these areas.

Student Tracks (No Prerequisites)

Foundations of Interfaith Leadership
Every movement has its beginning and for participants ready to join the IFYC community, this is where you can start. This track is designed to help lay the foundation for your journey with interfaith leadership.
Storytelling for Interfaith Cooperation
Storytelling is one of the core skills of interfaith leadership. Not only does it build meaningful relationships as a method of dialogue but it helps build a social movement. In this track, students will explore their own faiths and traditions, identify opportunities for meaningful stories, and learn how to articulate them in authentic and powerful ways.

Advanced Student Tracks (Prerequisites)

Tackling Challenging Conversations
In every interfaith leader's journey we come to moments where the bridge between our differences seems insurmountable. In this advanced track, we explore concepts, skills, and methods for engaging in challenging conversations and examine best practices concerning difficult issues of religious diversity in the campus and civic environment.
Interfaith Beyond Graduation
Interfaith leadership does not end with graduation. In fact, the skills and knowledge you have gained as a student leader can prepare you to live out this vision in your lives after college.

Educator Track

Foundational Concepts of Interfaith Leadership
Interfaith Youth Core bases its work on years of scholarship and research. This track focuses on IFYC’s core content and methodologies, providing educators with a larger picture of how programs and campus initiatives are shaped for building interfaith cooperation.

Advanced Educator Tracks

Facilitating Interfaith Workshops
This session offers a “train-the-trainer” approach to facilitating interfaith trainings and workshops on your campus. Participants will explore the key considerations for developing interfaith workshops and develop a set of best practices for facilitation.
Interfaith Strategic Planning
In this track, IFYC staff will guide campus leaders through a process to design a strategic plan for interfaith cooperation at their institution.

Fees & Registration:

The standard registration fee for the ILI is $299.00, which does not include lodging and travel. The registration fee provides for all programs, breakfasts, lunches, coffee/tea breaks, and dinner on Friday night. Please note payment is not due at the time of registration. Visit our event site for more details, including information about discounts, scholarships, and travel deals.

If your campus has never attended an ILI before, your campus will receive 2 free registrations.  Check out this list to see if your campus has previously attended an ILI. If you are a new campus or have questions about this, please reach out to your IFYC contact or email for the new campus discount code to use when you register.