Leadership Development

Competition Day {Behind the scenes}

A behind the scenes look at my LEAD Team

As recipients of the Leadership Advancement Scholarship, we all have requirements to meet every year. One of those requirements is to be on one of the many lead teams. A lead team is a group of LAS students who come together to plan a specific event(s) or make the program better. To name a few, there is the Diversity Lead Team, Grad Ball Lead Team, and my Lead team, Competition Day. This year I had the honor of serving on this lead team as the Sophomore Chair along with Hannah, the Junior chair and Bellal, the Senior chair. The three of us were in charge of our lead team and ultimately planning and executing Competition Day. Together, we spent months planning, having workshops, and getting other organizations involved to make this year the best Comp Day yet.

This year, we tried to shake the day up a bit and change things around to make it better. One of the biggest and more notable changes was moving the reception from a classroom into the Powers ballroom. Before this switch the reception was very cramped and hard to move around. As a result of the change, there was much more space to move around and talk with everyone. The switch made the reception less stressful and more enjoyable for everyone involved. Another change we made was having two workshops prior to competition day for the Student Guides and Interviews. This allowed us to go more in depth about our expectations for them and talk about how the day would play out. Also, with one of the workshops we focused on implicit bias and had a chance to discuss different aspects of that topic. Both of these switches were extremely instrumental in making this year’s Competition Day amazing.

Through being a lead team chair for competition day, I learned more about the LAS program and everything that goes into planning one of our biggest days of the year. There are so many different moving parts during the actual day such as the multiple student groups and parent groups. Also, we checked all of the rooms to make sure they were set up correctly and had everything we needed. Finally, we set up alternate dates for interviews for competitors who were unable to make it to competition day for various reasons.

For me, this has been one of the greatest experiences I have had here at Central and in the Leadership Institute. Helping plan a day where we are able to see the next leaders come to campus and help to grow the LAS program as well as the Leadership Institute was very special. The Leadership Advancement Program has given me so much these past two years and I am so excited to welcome the next group of leaders into the family.

Last but certainly not least, I am so grateful for the wonderful team I was able to work with for this event. Since it was my first year as a chair, most of my time was spent learning what to do. Bellal and Hannah helped me understand everything and we all supported one another. I look forward to working with Hannah as we take things up another notch and make the 2019 Comp Day even better!

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Leadership Development

Leadership Launch Round 2!

Leadership Launch: Round Two

Last year I had the honor of being one of the guides for the second Leadership Launch. This event is organized through the Leadership Institute and Special Olympics Michigan. In November, I was again able to join the Lead Team for the third Launch which was held in Ann Arbor. The Superhero theme illustrated that everyone can be a superhero. The team was thrilled to have representatives from National Special Olympics attend and take part in the activities.

Similar to last year, I was a guide for the athletes and their counterparts. As a guide, I led my group through different activities and watched them grow throughout the day. My team, Iron Man Yellow, consisted of 7 amazing student leaders. Together, we went through three different aspects of leadership imagination, teamwork, perspective, and empowerment.  During each section, my participants had great conversations about various aspects of leadership and how they interpreted each aspect. We also had many laughs throughout the day within our group and bonded in the hours we spent together. At the end of the day, every participant made an action plan about how they wanted to continue after that day. The plan included aspects like what they wanted to do at their school or in their community, resources that could help accomplish their plan, and specific actions they could take to accomplish the goal. Also, before leaving, each person at Launch wrote a Thank You letter to their personal superhero. My participants wrote letters to a teacher or parent and described how much that individual had helped them and made a difference in their life.

Every time I work with Special Olympics and the athletes involved, I am reminded of how much fun it is. Whether I am participating in Leadership Launch, Polar Plunge, or the Winter Games, I always learn something and have some of the best experiences. Special Olympics allows for athletes to grow in so many aspects while also creating fun opportunities.

Leadership Launch Round Two was a definite success.