International Service Learning and Leadership Elective

What Our Subject is About

Raffles Leadership Institute’s (RLI) Philosophy
Our approach to leadership development is guided by the following principles:

Leadership is a critical educational outcome that has to be purposefully and intentionally developed.
All students have the potential to be developed into leaders.
Students have to be active practitioners of leadership and not just passive learners.
Learning to be leaders is a long-term, developmental process.
The overarching purpose of leadership development is to equip students to contribute effectively and responsibly to society.


Our Pedagogical Approach
The RLI engages learners through real-world experiential learning. Through both direct and indirect experience of authentic situations, staff and students engage with the community and the environment to create meaningful learning opportunities.

We seek to build an environment of mutual respect that fosters personal relationships conducive to growth and leadership development, with staff and students alternating between the roles of those teaching and the taught.


Mission & Vision
The mission of RLI is to develop young people to be effective leaders of character, equipped with personal mastery and inter-personal skills, and anchored with a strong sense of social responsibility and commitment to service for the public good. 

The over-arching objective is to nurture future leaders for Singapore, imbued with the Rafflesian values of fortitude, integrity, respect and enterprise, and committed to using their talents for service to nation and community.

What We Do To Develop Students' Interest/Abilities

International Service-Learning and leadership Elective (ISLE) is a programme that aims to develop young people to be effective leaders of character with relevant skills to be community leaders and competent global citizens who are confident and sensitive in their interactions with different cultures. Experiential in nature, it prepares youth to be adaptive thinkers to ideate and co-construct meaning by making connections for deep engagement with local communities in Singapore and overseas communities in the ASEAN region. 

ISLE is a learning journey that involves critical reflection of local and regional issues, exploring topics such as social inequality, cultural diversity and active citizenry.

The learning gained will in turn enhance the students’ ability to design, develop and manage effective and meaningful service-learning projects for the communities around them. 

This process aims to help students to become better leaders through developing empathy and civic literacy so as to strengthen their sense of social responsibility and commitment to service for the public good.


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To develop empathy and gain perspectives of how wheelchair users and caregivers navigate their neighbourhood, students had an experiential session at Kampung Senang Mobility Aids Services & Training Centre.


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ISLE week is a one of the significant event of the ISLE journey where students fund raise for their project entirely upon return from their June recce trip.


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ISLE culminates with a year end trip where students will execute their planned refurbishment projects and enrichment sessions with the local pupils for meaningful interaction.


What Our Students Say

"Personally, my experience in ISLE was one of the most incredible and unique experiences in my life. It was eye-opening, enriching, fulfilling and meaningful, and it was both a learning process - where I truly discovered much about myself and others - and also a place that enabled me to forge so many amazing close friendships that I will truly treasure beyond ISLE. I am immensely grateful for the many opportunities ISLE has given me, and I have really learnt much and gained countless meaningful takeaways from this experience. ISLE has really inspired me to be a better person and also continue striving to make a positive impact in the world." 
- Caitlin Por, 2019

“ISLE for me was really an impactful journey. Coming in, I was greeted by a warm community of batchmates that I could call my friends that welcomed every single one of us with open arms. Throughout the year, we had engaging experiences ranging from learning journeys to 414 AMK Hub and Kampong Glam, to ISLE week, and to ISLE camp, all these activities taught me various lessons, from appreciating the local culture in Singapore, to learning how to and actually trying out fundraising. Furthermore, we were empowered to curate our own experiences, with different members appointed as ICs of various events and taking charge of planning and executing activities. I am immensely grateful for all the solid friends and invaluable experiences I gained from ISLE, and I am really inspired to enact more change in my community.” 
- Ethan Chan, 2023