Service Learning: MASC/MAHS Leadership Camp 2018

campThis past summer I had the opportunity to volunteer at MASC/MAHS Summer Leadership Camp. MASC/MAHS Summer Leadership Camp is a week-long leadership camp geared towards high school students who have the desire to develop their leadership skills and network with other student leaders across the state of Michigan. Students come to camp from all different backgrounds to learn about ways to better themselves, their community, and the world around them.

This was my 4th year at the camp in total, one as a camper and three on staff.  In previous years I was a counselor for level 1 campers, students who were experiencing camp for the first time. This year I had the opportunity to work with students who were camp2attending camp for the 3rd year. Throughout the week, my staff partner, Zack, and I led these students through various activities, simulations, and discussions all to help students understand their strengths and weaknesses and how they can use their attributes to better themselves, their communities, and ultimately our world.

Every year I find myself taking away something different from camp. This year I was reminded of the importance of being intentional in my relationships with others and also finding ways to improve on my weaknesses. Since level 3 requires students and counselors to fill out a Leadership Practice Inventory it allowed me to see my strengths and my weaknesses and how my leadership style would be best put into action.

I am very grateful for another opportunity to volunteer at MASC/MAHS Summer Leadership Camp and I am excited to return next year.

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SMEA

smeaOne student organization that I have been involved in since my freshman year of college is the Student Michigan Education Association (SMEA). SMEA is a student organization for pre-service teachers at the elementary and secondary level. Our organization provides many professional development opportunities for future educators such as conferences, workshops, and speakers. Additionally, SMEA emphasizes the importance of community service so each member is required to do at least two community service events per semester along with participating in our outreach service project where we paint murals in local elementary schools.

Being involved in SMEA the past 3 years has been one of the best experiences of my college career. Not only has this organization allowed me to network with other future teachers, it has provided me with ample community service opportunities and professional development opportunities that would not have been possible by just attending my education courses.

KME Public Relations Chair

Screen Shot 2018-03-28 at 7.21.26 PMAfter joining Kappa Mu Epsilon, a mathematics honor society this year at CMU, I had the opportunity to become the club’s public relations chair. During my first semester in KME I found so much value in attending meetings and events as a general member I decided to apply to be the new Public Relations Chair.

When I first joined KME, we had no social media presence. As the new Public Relations Chair, not only have I created a facebook page for us but I also have been in charge of creating posters for our upcoming meetings.

Holding an executive board position in a student KME has pushed me out of my comfort zone and made me grow both personally and professionally. Becoming KME’s PR chair allowed me to further network with other KME members, plan meeting agendas, create community service opportunities, advertise our club’s information, and give back to CMU students.

Service Learning: MASC/MAHS Summer Leadership Camp

Screen Shot 2017-03-25 at 10.22.18 PM.pngThis summer I had the opportunity to return to one of my favorite places and volunteer as a junior counselor at MASC/MAHS Summer Leadership Camp.

MASC/MAHS Summer Leadership Camp is a week-long leadership camp for high school students. Students come to camp from all different backgrounds across the state to network with other student leaders, and learn about ways to better themselves, their community, and the world around them.

I spent my second year on staff being a junior counselor for a group of 20 high school students who were experiencing camp for the first year. Throughout the week, my staff partner, Brian, and I led these students through various activities, simulations, and discussions all to help these students further understand the immense need for leadership in our world and how they can make a difference throughout their everyday lives.

This was my 3rd year spent at MASC/MAHS Summer Camp, one as a camper and two on Screen Shot 2017-03-25 at 10.22.32 PM.pngstaff. Every year I take away something new from my week-long experience. This year I was reminded of the importance of being intentional in my relationships with others, and the importance of perseverance through difficult times. I was reminded that no matter where you are in life, the relationships you build with others are the greatest blessing.

I am so grateful for my experience as a 2nd year junior counselor this summer and I can’t wait to return back to camp next summer.

A Year in Review

Screen Shot 2016-04-27 at 2.20.00 PMIt is hard for me to believe that just nine short months ago I arrived on CMU’s campus for the first time as an undergraduate student. I was excited, nervous, and anxious to transition into a full-time college student and to enter the “adult world.”

I cannot even begin to describe the immense impact that my first year of college has had on my life. It has undoubtedly been one of the greatest challenges thus far as it has made me look deeply at myself, my passions, and the role I want to play in making the world a better place.

While I could list the numerous clubs I joined this year or some of my most cherished memories, I’m going to keep this post short and sweet by telling you a few of the most important lessons I learned throughout my first year at Central Michigan University.

Lesson 1: Always ask for help

I learned that asking for help is not something that you should do, but something that is of uttermost importance to your success as a college student. Don’t know where your biology lab is? Ask someone. Struggling with a concept in Calculus? Go to office hours and the Math Center. Not sure what classes to take next semester? Make an appointment with an advisor. There are so many people on this campus who want you to succeed and would do anything to help you; make sure you utilize these resources and always ask for help when needed.

Lesson 2: Just because you may fail, doesn’t mean you are a failure

As a college student and someone who holds myself to high academic standards, I felt my heart drop deep into my stomach when for the first time in my entire life, I didn’t have all A’s. I spent hours a day going over calculus notes, doing calculus homework, and studying my butt off for days on end only to receive a B+ in the class. While in high school, I would’ve been deeply disappointed in myself for receiving a grade less than an A, Calculus I taught me that it isn’t the grade that defines your success as a student, it is your work ethic and dedication to understanding the material that does.

Lesson 3: Always, always follow your passion

Screen Shot 2016-01-30 at 2.27.45 PM.pngI came to CMU with a strong passion for teaching and education. I knew, with my whole heart, that becoming a High School Teacher was my calling and that with my career, I would be able to positively impact the lives of my students. As I enrolled in my first education course, completed all forty-five of my required observation hours, and joined the Student Michigan Education Association, my passion for teaching has only grown since I’ve been here. I am so grateful that my passion has allowed me to not only take education courses that I have genuinely enjoyed but has also connected me to other students on campus who share the same passion.

Lesson 4: There is happiness everywhere

1e49b39f-6255-45f1-a5ff-a99a8ce05957.jpgWhile being a college student can seem inherently overwhelming with never ending assignments, papers, group projects, and presentations, I have found that there is happiness everywhere, you just have to look for it. There is happiness within the close friendships you form. There is happiness when you get an awesome grade on a test you studied for days on end. There is happiness when the sun rises on the walk to your 8 am Calculus lecture. There is happiness when you sip your favorite Starbucks drink while studying in the UC. College is a place full of endless moments of happiness, you just have to embrace them.

There are many more lessons that I have learned throughout my first year of college and I cannot wait to see what new adventures the next three years will bring.

 

 

 

 

LDR 200L: Introduction to Leadership

70fd428d669eb1c63d37b3ca5157c1b6When I found out part of LAS Protocol was to take a three credit leadership course with my fellow LAS-ers, I couldn’t have been more excited. Although I had taken Student Leadership classes throughout high school and have been to countless camps, trainings, and workshops, I was excited to gain new college-level perspectives on leadership.

One of my favorite parts of this course, besides bonding over weekly snacks and Wednesday night dinners at the Robinson cafeteria after class, was learning more in depth about what researchers say leadership is.

Though learning about theories for three hours straight may sound boring, the way the material was presented in this course was a breath of fresh air; we were put into groups and were assigned to create an interactive workshop about the theory and how it is relevant to our lives as college students. By learning through this format, it was easy to understand complex theories and apply them to our everyday lives.

Also, there are some pretty neat aspects of this course that are unlike any other college class I’ve ever taken that I will apply to my future classroom one day:

  • A warm, welcoming classroom environment
  • Powerpoint presentations that don’t have 8,233,936 words on one slide
  • Funny, but relevant, videos
  • A genuine care for the success of all students
  • Lively, engaging lectures and activities
  • Self-reflection
  • and so much more

I still have about a month left in LDR 200L, thankfully. In this last month I’m excited to:

  • Receive my own mentee ❤
  • Present my workshop on The Social Change Model
  • Travel to Detroit, Michigan and volunteer with my cohort
  • Continue to develop as a leader and learn more about how others perceive leadership

 

Leadership Comes from Saying Yes

d1352bb06a6b6bfcdb0dcebf051e93a0When I think of leadership and the multitude of decisions that leaders make on a daily basis, I believe that true leadership comes from saying yes.

Everything about leadership revolves around the principle of saying yes. Being a leader means that you’re willing to say “Yes, the world we live in can be made better and I am going to be part of that change.” Being a leader means you’re willing to say yes to the challenges and obstacles you will face and not steer away from them. Being a leader means you’re willing to say yes to leaping outside of your comfort zone and not just living inside your shell. And being a leader means you’re willing to say yes, I am passionate about this and yes, I am going to put my passion to action.5f0a2d9b2e484eb511006908f44c9e79

Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, George Washington and Nelson Mandela are world renown leaders because they chose to say “This isn’t how things should be and yes, I am going to take a stand to make our world a better place.”

True leaders know that saying yes isn’t always the easy choice. If it was easy to accept the challenge of trying to change the world, everyone would do it. If it was easy to challenge yourself to be a better person every day, everyone would do it.

We live in a world where it isn’t always easy to say yes, and that’s why leadership comes from a yes.