Although we didn’t spend 24/7 together like some duo’s may, you have no idea how lucky I am to have a mentee like you. Your kindness is infectious beyond belief and your faith is so powerful that I know you are changing people’s hearts here at CMU and wherever you go.
From the moment I read about you, I knew I wanted you. I always wanted a mentee with whom I could share a love for God with, and boy was I right. Every time we met up, I left with the happiest heart because I always knew that God was doing great things in your life and because I loved hearing about all the ways that you were shining his light. Thank you for always being an encouragement in my life even though you probably had no idea you were. You impacted my life this year probably more than I did yours!
It has been so amazing to watch you grow into the almost college sophomore that you are! Isn’t it crazy to think that soon enough you are going to be writing a blog post to the next addition to our crazy family?! But seriously… your grandma and I were just talking about how independent you are, and boy is it crazy how opposite we are. I love knowing that even though I don’t see you all the time, I know you are ok and that you truly are thriving here on campus. I am so glad to see that you have found all the places that you fit in and where you are going to grow over the next few years on campus. I am so proud of you and everything you have accomplished this year… #proudmom
Thank you for making my sophomore year even more enjoyable, and I can’t wait to further our relationship with the newest addition to our family!
I would just like to start this post by saying “holy moly”!!! I cannot believe that I am just 7 days from technically being a sophomore in college. When people say that college flies by faster than high school, they aren’t joking. With that being said, I could write a whole blog post on how this year has changed me, and I might do that later, but for now I would like to share about what I have learned over the year about my leadership style.
Before coming into LAS, I honestly had no idea that there were so many leadership theories, let alone what they were or what they meant. After learning about all of them, I feel as though I really connected with the Social Change theory this year.
Being in LAS has given me the opportunity to follow a protocol that has allowed me to tackle many aspects of leadership. One part of my protocol that I would do even if it wasn’t a part of it, was to be involved in an RSO. The Social Change model applies to this in a sense that when you’re in the organizations, you are focused on the individual, group and community. Within myself, I try to hold still to my values and beliefs before the group so I am competent and confident within the group. In the group, where I am now focusing on collaboration and interaction between myself and the organization, I am trying to instill the groups values into them for future leadership roles. For example, I try to implement the skills of helpfulness, being a servant, and collaboration among my group so eventually we can all foster these characteristics and implement them in our leadership behaviors daily on the job. Within the society, the group is trying to bring about change for the common good. An idea of this would be how certain organizations shape you into well rounded leaders that are career based, or major based, so you are ready to impact the field and others around you for the long run.
Through the 7 C’s of leadership, social change is able to happen. I’ll explain 2 briefly:
Common Purpose- This is to work collectively with the group through shared visions and for everyone to participate actively in the purpose and goals of the group. An example of this would take place in SAVV (Student Advocates for Vegetarianism/Veganism) where they all share the common purpose of saving the lives of animals and protecting the environment from to the mass production of meat.
Citizenship- This is not simply membership, but actively being engaged in the community where your ultimately working towards social change. Although this is implied in every single RSO to go out and volunteer, this is another section of our protocol where 30 hours of service with in our community can impact us as leaders. As we gain more self knowledge in this act, social change can increase as others see the problems they face as connected to the problems of other people and choose to engage in it.
Social Change Model is something we should lead by everyday in trying to make yourself and the community better. Through this model you can find satisfaction and enjoyment from making a difference in the world. As emerging leaders on campus, this protocol is allowing us to apply the many realms of leadership in many unique ways where we can all make a difference.
All our handprints showing that we stand up against abuse
Everyone in FCA after collecting socks for the homeless shelter
when we won the name game:) photo cred to Vincent Thurman
I am so beyond thankful for this crazy and hectic first year of college and I wouldn’t have asked for a better freshman year!!
Well folks, after LDR100 we just loved everything we learned that my cohort obviously just HAD to take LDR200. I was very excited going into this class with my cohort because I ended up having to miss a lot of LDR100 due to marching band practices. This class was the perfect chance for me to really learn some basic necessities for leadership as well as get to know more people in my cohort.
This class was tailored for us to learn how to facilitate and to determine what our most ideal form of leading was. Through this discovery, we all were assigned a workshop to present to the class. These consisted of leadership theories that we had to dissect and facilitate, that characterize the many takes and forms on leadership. The theory my group was assigned was called the “Leader-Member Exchange Theory” otherwise known as LMX theory. This theory really focused on how to be a successful leader through building good relationships with their followers so that they will want to be successful and you form a strong team feel. Our theory was a little different because most theories focused on either just the leaders or just the followers whereas ours focused on how they need to be able to work together to be successful. Through this workshop and through listening to everyone else’s workshops, my mind has been opened to so many different leader and follower behaviors and I have learned how to adjust my leadership style when I am working with all different groups.
Another requirement of this class was to facilitate an initiative, which is an activity that engages a group in a fun and interactive way, while also teaching them about the many traits that build a leader. My initiative team had teamwork which is a key component to leadership. To present our initiative we had a few different groups with about 5 students in each group. Each team was given a about 10 sheets of plain copy paper and were given very vague instructions to build a contraption that could hold a very heavy school book. The groups had to work as a team to decide on one idea and then help each other build whatever it was that they came up with. Each group was able to be successful and they said it was because they listened to everyones ideas and then worked together to build the best structure based on everyones input. Being leaders, it is especially important that not one person dominates a group, but rather that everyone’s voices are heard and taken into consideration.
In the end, this class has showed me all sides to leadership and what forms I may need to use in certain situation, where I can better impact and motivate my followers. It has brought me closer to my cohort and has showed me what I am capable as a leader. I was able to work on my public speaking skills and really task my brain on other ways in which i can better my self and others. If you’d like to see my interpretation of leadership, check out my page on my leadership philosophy.
What: As part of protocol, each LAS student was put into a group that they were interested in and were on the committee for planning any events or activities for that group. I was put on the LEAD team called “Special Events” and were in charge of planning any fun activities for LAS students to do outside of school that brought all the freshman-seniors together for some fun. Some of the events that my group put on were Minute to Win It Game Night, LEAD on Ice, and a final picnic.
So What: Being a part of this group was essential to being a part of LAS because not only did you get a chance to form relationships with the upper classmen, but, you were also put in a leadership position right off the bat. I am very thankful for my group because we were always energetic and we worked together very well when trying to plan events. It was very nice to work with fellow leaders and see all our hard work pay off.
Now What: Because I really enjoyed this lead team, I am thinking that I want to apply to be a part of this group again next year and maybe work my way up to be the leader of this group. I think this group really helped me learn more leadership skills such as teamwork and communication and I look forward to being a part of whatever lead team I get put on!
As part of my LAS protocol and to fulfill a class for my leadership minor, I was required to take the class HST110 or “An American Experience”. My teacher taught this course focusing on immigration and talking about what immigration was really like starting from the beginning of immigration up until present day. I found this class to be very interesting and at the same time very dry.
Throughout this class, we watch many informative videos about immigration from all different countries and in those movies, we got to hear real stories from immigrants all about their life in America after immigration. Before taking this class I thought I knew a lot about immigration, but with 3 weeks left, I can tell you that I have learned more in these past 13 weeks on the topic than I ever had throughout my public school experience. It was really cool to dive in deep into why immigration was not always great and how even though people say America is amazing, there are still many flaws.
I don’t want to get too political, but this class really got me thinking about everything going on in our world with our current President. It was really interesting to hear about how racist Americans were towards immigrants and how that is kind of repeating itself in todays day and age.
One of the projects we had to do in the class was come up with a leader in America who was an immigrant and make a presentation on where they were from and why they are/were a leader. My group chose to write about John Muir, the creator of our National Parks. If you would like to check out our presentation click here.
John Muir; founder of National Parks
I think it was very important for my cohort to take this class because of everything that is going on in our world. It really turned my point of view away from myself and more on other people of different races and backgrounds. As leaders it is SO important for us to be inclusive of everyone and knowledgable of people’s background. I believe this class gave me vital information that I can use when I am working with groups from all different backgrounds.
Holy moly what an amazing(and exhausting) weekend it was! On Friday I boarded a bus with lots of other CMU leaders on it and we eagerly awaited our arrival at Connections Conference 2016. The conference was designed to do exactly what it did- bring leaders together from all around campus and further develop our leadership skills. I could on and on about all the amazing things I learned, how much fun the water park was, and I would love to talk to any one who wants to hear all about what I did, but I’m going to narrow this blog post down to my favorite session.
Gettin’ Dirty: The Dirty Dozen
For those of you who don’t know what “The Dirty Dozen” are, they are the top 12 rationalizations and excuses we use when making unethical decisions. We began this session with a list of scenarios and we had to choose from A-D on how we would respond. Some answers were definitely more ethical than others, but it was important for us to be honest. For example, we were asked if although it is technically illegal to take more than one piece of fruit out of the cafeteria, would we do if we were really hungry? The most common answer: Yes. The right answer: no. So, without further ado, the dirty dozen:
It’s for your own good
Everybody does it
Who am I to judge?
You’re a bigger one
It’s not my job
Nobody is hurt
It’s too important
It’s not important
The end justified the means
I’m only human
It’s a stupid rule
Ethics is a luxury I can’t afford right now
Not only did this session open my eyes to how I make judgements in my everyday life, it also helped me realize how I will make future decisions in my job and especially in my leadership roles.
This past weekend was my first “Mentor Mentee Retreat” for LAS. The weekend was filled with many laughs, good talks, and of course, lots of leadership training. Heading into the weekend, I’m going to be honest, I just really wanted to stay in my dorm and catch up on much-needed sleep. I was really struggling with homesickness the night before and all I wanted to do was go home and be with my family; God clearly had this weekend all planned out because wow, was my mind totally changed after being on the retreat for just 5 seconds. I was so nervous as the weekend began because so many LAS people are crazy outgoing and that is one thing that I am definitely not(but trying to work on). When we broke into our small groups, we talked a lot about what we were looking to get out of the retreat and someone in my group responded that they wanted to step out of their comfort zone. Merriam-Webster defines a comfort zone as, “a place, situation, or level where someone feels confident and comfortable” Some examples of my comfort zone’s are church, family, marching band, Clarkston; anything but being around new environments. It wasn’t until the team building activities that I really realized how small my comfort zone was, and without the help of my fellow LAS friends it would have stayed that way. What I never realized before stepping out of my comfort zone was HOW DARN FUN THINGS ARE WHEN YOU AREN’T IN IT. Life is so boring if you just live your life in your little box doing the same things all the time. I can easily say I would’ve never enjoyed the high ropes course if all I worried about was how high up were. I would’ve never met half the LAS people I did if I wouldn’t have just sat down next to them at a meal; and I definitely wouldn’t have learned all about trust and leadership if I never would’ve stepped out of my comfort zone.
So many times I have let my anxiety get the best of me, but not anymore. It is SO hard to ever learn anything new or grow as a person/leader if you don’t take risks. I climbed a wall that had no ropes and nothing to hold onto simply because I put all my trust in my teammates to help me climb over it and forced myself to try new things, and it was so darn fun. So, ditch your comfort zone and have some fun because I promise, it WILL be more fun.