Leadership Development · Leadership Education · Leadership Training

Theory Application/LDR 200L Review

With my leadership cohort, we took together LDR200L on Wednesday nights with our Professor, Jesi Ekonnen along with three amazing TA’s: Garrett Ritterhaus, Kate Odykirk, and my G, Jordan Salerno. LDR200L was very eye-opening. I was given so many great opportunities with facilitation, theory research, and just getting to know my cohort on a closer level. We discussed many different leadership theories, applying them in the real world, and on top of that, we got to create our own leadership philosophy.

One thing I am so happy to take away from this class was the skill of facilitation. I never really have facilitated an activity before this class, and I feel as if I gained confidence talking and using a leading role in an activity initiative.

Facilitation is so important when it comes to different activities. It sets the mood and teaches us how to effectively give direction and help people throughout course activities. This is very important, mainly when you are working with a team who wants to achieve goals and working hard in solving problems. Within my LAS cohort, we all know we have different leadership styles and skills, but improving them and working to help give others ideas and facilitate positively, will only be great encouragement for our future endeavors. The cool thing about learning how to facilitate is that it challenges you to think from different points of view, coming in with an open-mind, making the activity experience for others, a good one.

In our LDR200L class, we learned about dealing with silence or uncomfortable situations you are likely to be in when facilitating and asking questions/debriefing an activity. A facilitators job is to spark in conversation, asking questions and letting the participants grow deeper in conversation on their own level. While facilitating and debriefing, it is ideal to recognize that all people are different and take things in different ways, so it is very important to be respectful, having an open-mind. The goal of facilitated activities is just to learn or take away even just one small thing from it.

From my LDR200L class, I have observed many things. I have watched people gain knowledge from one another, and how to apply leadership in every day life. Active leadership was one of my favorite theories learned. I have taken away from this presented workshop theory. I was not always an active leader but facilitation came into this theory for me. About a month ago, I went on a sisterhood retreat with my sorority, Phi Sigma Sigma, and as the Leadership Development Chair, I had the opportunity to come up with an activity and facilitate it for my whole chapter. I ended up doing one of my favorite activities called, Cross the line. This is a very serious activity and is supposed to be completely silent. I ask very personal questions and if the people behind the line agree with my statement or if it has happened to them, they were asked to cross the line. I had to take charge, quite people down saying, “this is a serious activity”, making it a big deal. Once the activity was over, I debriefed it briefly and everyone said how much of an impact it had on them. Also, a visitor from our headquarters came up to me afterward and said to me, “this is one of my favorite activities and you by far presented this better than other other person I have seen do it, great job.” I felt so proud of myself knowing that I took away this skill from LDR class and the theory workshops.

Overall, I am so happy I took this class and I can’t wait to apply everything I learned more and more throughout my next three years of college!

 

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Leadership Development · Leadership Training

Mentor Reflection

A part of the Leader Advancement Scholarship protocol is that all sophomore LAS scholars have the amazing opportunity to become a mentor to a freshman LAS recipient. Going into my freshmen year, myself along with everyone in my cohort got a mentor. The purpose of mentors is to have someone as a resource, friend, and just someone to be there to answer questions, give advice, and to learn from one another at our first of four years or more at Central Michigan University. Given the opportunity to be a mentor is special, and I cannot express my excitement to be given the chance to mentor someone just like my own Mentor and G, mentored me throughout my freshman year.

My mentor, Marissa, had a clever idea to reveal herself to me with pizza. The big reveal was such a fun experience and it is so crazy to think that now it’s my turn to reveal myself to my mentee.

In our LDR 200L class, we went over an activity on how to be a good mentor and what ideas we had to bring to the table when we get our own mentees. We divided up in groups and were asked to write down our top10 things we wish we knew before coming to college or specifically Central Michigan. We all talked about what we wish we knew and it was fun but very good points were made. Then we talked about what kind of mentor we wanted to be for our mentees. Most of us wanted the same things, for example, being a friend, a shoulder to cry on, watching them grow, and just having someone to answer questions and being there. I realized that it is now my turn to step up and be a great role model/example for my mentee, while getting to know him/her and watch them grow and lead in their first year of college.

This workshop gave me so many ideas how to make my mentees first year one of their best. I want to be a good friend to my mentee and making sure that they have all the tools they need to succeed their freshman year. I will be reliable, and whenever they ask for advice, help, or just for anything in general, I will be their “go to” person. I want my mentee to realize that they got chosen to be a part of the Leadership Institute for a reason, and they are truly special. I want to have good conversations, being able to connect on a personal level, discovering what they are passionate about and how I can help them achieve there goals.

I’m determined to be the best mentor I can be. I want my mentee to know that they have the rest of my cohort as mentor’s as well. The whole Leadership Institute staff truly cares and are all mentors to the freshman. I am beyond excited for this mentorship program to finally start and can’t wait to see how unique and wonderful my mentee is.

Community · Leadership Development

LEAD Team Reflection

Part of the Leader Advancement Scholarship protocol is to join what is called a “LEAD Team.” It is mandatory, but there are so many different teams to get involved with. All of the events are put on by the Leadership Institute and it is a good way to publicize the Leadership Institute, getting more people involved. The event I took part in was the Relay for Life. The Leadership Institute created a group of LAS recipients to raise money for the American Cancer Society. At the event, I along with others walked, ran a table, and got to talk to a lot of people. I am so happy that I was a part of this LEAD team because I walked in memory of my good friend Addy Donahue. She was an inspiration to so many people and I was honored to walk on her behalf. 

Our LEAD Team had many issues to start did not go as I thought it would. Each LEAD team has a team leader, and ours had conflicts with meeting times so it was handled all last minute. Many of us were confused as to how we were going to do well being as our leader stepped down but we had a few girls step up, and take charge and made our Relay very successful.  We ended up raising around 1,300 dollars, took third overall raising the money for the Relay for Life.

Overall, I loved being a part of the Relay for Life team and I hope to stay involved with it. This Relay really spoke to me and I want to get even more involved with the American Cancer Society. The hope in everyone’s eyes truly touched me and any difference we can make, I want to be a part of. Every Relay at CMU has a theme, and this year it was “birthday”. It was fun because the Relay for Life wants people fighting with cancer to get the chance to celebrate as many birthdays as possible.

As a LEAD team we faced our ups and downs, but I really couldn’t have been a part of a better team. The money we raised, and the hope and comfort we gave others, makes me want to get more involved and be a part of all of Central’s future Relay’s.

Leadership Education

COM267L Reflection

Another class that was required as part of the Leadership Advancement Scholarship Protocol was taking Communications 267. This class really pushed me. I took a debate class in high school, but taking here at CMU was totally different. I am usually one who likes debating on certain topics I’m passionate about but for this class, I really had to do outside research about things that actually make me more knowledgable about the world. Forward thinking, Dr. Hillman definitely taught me many things. He taught our class the do’s and don’ts of debating. I learned the value of communication skills and how to talk to others and alsohow to support my claims and argue with a purpose.  class was very beneficial because as a leader, you face many challenges and sometimes you will not agree with other people but learning how to take care of situations appropriately and getting feedback from other whether they agree or not just makes you a better listener and leader.

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