Community

Dear Mentee…

Hello Sylvie, it’s me, your mentor!

I am so excited for this amazing experience for you to begin! As your mentor, I want to help make your college experience something you will cherish forever.

You don’t know this yet but you are in for a crazy year. You’ll experience heartbreaks, laughter, new friendships, new roommates, missing home and of course hard classes.

I want you to know something, I will be here for you NO MATTER WHAT. I have promised myself that your happiness is my number one concern for next year. I want you to be able to come to me with any question imaginable at 4 in the morning, I want you to feel comfortable enough to cry to me when you need to, and I want you to know you have a friend.

LAS is an amazing opportunity. Without it, I honestly do not know where I would be at this moment. Freshman year is very difficult, however, with the support of the LI you can accomplish anything.

I also want you to know that my whole cohort is here for you. Especially my roommates. You can come to any of us at any time and we will be there for you. The resources on campus are unlimited.

I know you are going to be successful by yourself. You are an amazing individual, but I want to make it easier for you then it is for a lot of people! I want you to be the best you can be, and I will be there to help you.

You are beautiful, smart, talented and sweet and I cannot wait to learn more about you. It is going to be a wonderful year creating endless amounts of memories with you.

Love your Mentor,

Riley

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Leadership Education

LDR 200L

For my Leadership Advancement Scholarship, we are required to complete courses that follow along with our protocol. One of the courses is LDR 200L, which is all about leadership theories.

One of my favorite things we learned during this course was how to facilitate. Facilitating means leading an activity or project and then reflecting on how the activity related to everyday life lessons. This class not only taught us how to facilitate, it also gave us resources on activities to facilitate.

This course required us to put together an initiative and put it on for the class. We also were in charge of an entire workshop that taught our peers’ different leadership theories.

This course is different than other college classes. It is very hands on, instead of just learning what something was we learned how to do it and then actually got to do it. I appreciated the way we were taught, and how much support we received from the TA’s. I am so lucky to have been able to take this course with my cohort. It allowed for open conversations, easy learning environment and of course a fun class period.

I learned more in this class than any other course I have taken so far. I learned how to teach, how to learn and more importantly how to lead.

Now that I have taken this course I will most definitely pursue a leadership minor. This class inspired me to follow my passion of leadership. I will take the skills that I learned from this course and use them in my RSO’s on campus and a variety of different ways back at home.

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader” -John Quincy Adams

 

Leadership Development · Personal Life

Freshman Year Review

I hear many students around campus talking about “how fast this school year went”. fullsizeoutput_e66I nod my head and think about how in just a short week I will be done with my first ever year of college. It went by so incredibly fast, it feels like yesterday I moved in.

Then I sit and reflect on everything that happened in such a short year and realize how much I actually went through to get where I am today. I switched my major three times, finished 35 credits, joined two organizations, accepted an eBoard position, interned at a church, switched rooms, took multiple exams, met my two best friends and found my passion all in two semesters.

IMG_1107 I battled depression and anxiety all while learning ways to cope with life away from home. I discovered what works for me when I am upset, and I have learned how not to get upset. I found myself. I learned that I was a different person than I was just a short nine months ago. I am stronger, more passionate and overall a more open minded person.

College changed me. Some ways good, some ways bad. I am a better listener, I care about people and their beliefs. I know what I want in my future and I have found friends that will stick by me. I have learned to take naps anywhere, and I have gained the confidence to go to class before even getting ready. I have also learned that the stress of college WILL make you gain weight no matter how much you work out and eat healthily. College will make you fatter no matter how much you try for it not to. IMG_0633

Something that I realized pretty early on, is how much I value my friendships at home. The people that I surrounded myself with at home, are people that I still love and cherish just as much as my new friends. I appreciate them so much. They listened to me cry, came and visited me and reminded me that home isn’t so far away when you stay in touch with the people that matter. IMG_2239My friends from home are my rocks. They have supported me in everything I have done and I cannot thank them enough.

All in all, this year in total sparked many emotions. I now appreciate my parents and family so much more. I live every day in the moment and I have met the two most amazing women that I know will be forever friends. I value life and family and friendships.

IMG_1871I also learned that college sucks. It is a phrase that every college student has mumbled at least once under their breath. College sucks, but it is also the most amazing thing at the same time. It is different, it is challenging but it is also rewarding. The late nights studying almost ruined me, the early mornings were not my favorite, the cafeteria food could have been better, some people I met were strange, not all of my professors knew my name and there are no adults around to rescue you. It is the transitional period from adolescence to a real live adult.

BUT I MADE IT. I really did. I received mostly A’s and am still on track to graduate! WOW, who would have thought? Life could not get any better than it is right now. I appreciate everything my parents, friends, and advisors did to get me where I am today. I look back to just 5 months ago where I was considering dropping out and all these people helped make sure that I made it. I owe everything to them.

This year is one I will NEVER forget. I have found who I truly want to be. I cannot wait for the three amazing years and endless opportunities ahead of me. fullsizeoutput_e6a

 

 

Leadership Education

Servant Leadership in LAS Protocol

The definition of servant leadership according to Robert K. Greenleaf,  is a philosophy and set of practices that enrich the lives of individuals, builds better organizations and ultimately creates a more just and caring world. “The servant-leader is servant first… It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first.” -Robert K. Greenleaf.

Servant leadership appears in our LAS protocol in a variety of different ways.

17904363_1549749585067592_4082459832143546204_nThe first way it appears is the protocol of having to receive thirty or more service hours per year. This is servant leadership because it is volunteering to help someone or an organization in a positive way.  You can serve your community, organization, friends and companies.

For my thirty hours of community service, I performed a variety of different tasks.16602029_1472658919443326_2582136798976815645_o I volunteered at Relay for Life, volunteered in Flint, I made blankets for a women’s shelter, I helped organized donated books for the Philippines, I made valentines day cards for a nursing home, I made lunches for homeless children and I volunteered at Potter’s House. Servant Leadership is supposed to enrich the lives of others around you. I have continuously pushed myself to help others on and off campus. This LAS protocol helped me push myself even further. Servant Leadership, in my opinion, is about dedicating time to help others in a positive way. I observed my cohort around me volunteering in so many different ways, we made in impact on so many people. The protocol of having to get 30 hours of community service hours encourage everyone in LAS to perform servant leadership.

img_2089Anther one of my favorite protocols for LAS is the service trip to Detroit. We are required to travel to Detroit with the Leadership institute to perform a multitude of different tasks to help the city. On the last day, we traveled to CASS Social Services to volunteer. We were all separated into different groups, some were in the kitchen making food for the homeless, some helped make mats out of recycled tires etc. It was the perfect application of servant leadership because we all contributed to a cause that would affect the city of Detroit in a positive way.

The Servant Leadership theory portrays itself in so many different ways. Anyone can be a servant leader.  It takes time, dedication and passion for what you are doing. There are a multitude of different real life applications that are considered servant leadership. The Leadership Advancement Scholarship does a fantastic job encouraging their students to dedicate their time to a good cause. Receiving 30 hours of community service and the Detroit Trip are just a few ways that the LAS cohort show servant leadership. There are so many other ways that we as students use servant leadership in our everyday life without being directed by our protocol. Servant Leadership, in my opinion, is the most important leadership theory known today. Serving others without pay or reward shows an immense amount of character. I am so lucky to be a part of a scholarship that expects us to apply servant leadership to our everyday lives.

Community

Mentor Reflection

200c7786f2457944ee83b90562ba03daAs a new freshman, life on campus can be hectic. I remember the feeling of not knowing anyone as I walked around campus. I remember not knowing where I was on campus. It is a terrible thing. The one thing that allowed for me to transition into college as well as I did was my mentor.

As an incoming freshman in the Leadership Advancement Scholarship, you are paired up with a sophomore mentor. I was blessed to have an amazing mentor my freshman year. I learned so much from her, and I cannot wait to be able to mentor someone next year and give them the same knowledge that I received.

To prepare us to be a mentor, our LDR 200 class participated in a Mentor Workshop. I had ideas of what I needed to do, however, after the workshop, I had a better idea of what being a mentor entailed. I am prepared to listen to my mentee, and I am prepared to dedicate time to them all year.

I am looking forward to having a mentee so that I can teach them things going into college that I wish I would’ve known. It is such a scary process, and going into it alone can make it worse. I am looking forward to teaching them, however, also learning from them. Being a mentor is such an amazing way to learn about yourself. I will be such a great example for my mentee, and I will push myself even further to be the best student and role model I can be.

I am preparing myself to be a mentor in a variety of different ways. Not only am I taking pictures of my current dorm room now to share with my mentee but I am already thinking about important facts and tips that I can share with them. I am also preparing myself by talking about how I am going to treat my mentee with others. I want the people around me to hold me accountable. I want to be the best mentor and role model possible.

Now that I have gone through the mentor workshop I have discovered things that I need to work on. Before next year I want to stay in touch with my mentee and provide support throughout the summer. I also will introduce him/her to other mentors that can provide them help as well. I cannot wait to give someone the gift that I received last year. The gift of friendship, love, and guidance.

Leadership Education

HST 110L

For my Leadership Advancement Scholarship, we are required to take certain classes to fulfill our protocol. During the second semester of my freshman year, we were required to take HST 110L: American Experience. This class explored immigration in early America and how it influenced our country to be the way it is today.

41kK2H2t92L._SX348_BO1,204,203,200_During this class, we were required to purchase two books, Post-Ethnic America by David A. Hollinger, and Major Problems in American Immigration History by Mae M. Ngai, and Jon Gjerde. We were required to write two five-page paper61jKVbeDAhL._SX327_BO1,204,203,200_s, four exam papers and we required to do a group presentation on a famous immigrant. Each one of these assignments challenged my beliefs and understanding of immigration. It caused discussions which enabled students to learn more about our history as a country and those who immigrated to it. We learned stories of the first settlers all the way up to those immigrated to America due to the Irish Potatoe Famine. This class gave me a better understanding on why and how immigrants during the nineteenth and twentieth century immigrated to America.

Now that I have taken this course I want to learn more about my ancestors and how they came to America. Over Christmas break, my dad was able to participate in Ancestry.com. He found out where his ancestors are from, when they came here and how they got here. I was not very interested during Christmas break when my dad first received his information in the mail, However, now that I have learned more about immigration during that time I have been more interested in my dad’s results.

This class challenged my beliefs and made me want to understand more about immigration into America in the past and today.

Leadership Development

Leadership Advancement Scholarship

LAS has changed my life for the better. I still remember the phone call saying I received the scholarship like it was yesterday. The people and connections I have made through this scholarship in just 3 months has already affected my life in so many ways.

The Leadership Advancement Scholarship  is a scholarship offered through Central Michigan University. It is made up of 49 students that all live in the same residence hall and are awarded $2,000 annually. The money honestly has nothing to do with how amazing this program is. The staff at the LI have given me a shoulder to cry on, scheduling help and I even babysat on of their baby’s. It isn’t just a scholarship program, it is a family. cropped-cropped-img_0847.jpg

The protocol for LAS the first year is as follows:

  • We must receive 30+ hours of community service annually
  • Involvement in a registered student organization
  • We must be a part of a LAS LEAD team
  • Attendance at 3 leadership lectures each semester
  • One seminar or workshop pertaining to leadership

We also are required to take some classes with our cohort. Those include for the first year:

  • COM 267L – Intro to Debate
  • PSY 100L – Intro to Psychology
  • LDR 100 – Leadership Colloquium
  • HST 110L – The American Experience
  • LDR  101 – Leadership Colloquium

The people in LAS are beyond amazing. They have helped me so much adjust to the college life. I have already made so many life long friends in such a short amount of time. Receiving this scholarship has been the best thing to happen to me since getting into CMU. I cannot wait to see what my future has in store for me. FIRE UP CHIPS!!!

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“You are not the leaders of tomorrow, you are the leaders of today!”

-Dan Gaken