Learning to Lead Through Life offers unique class alternative

Nicole King

Class started in an unexpected way for Meghan Williams.

“We are waiting for the speaker to start his speech and then he starts singing. I wasn’t expecting that at all, but then he begins to speak, and he is stuttering over his words,” Meghan Williams, a junior marketing major, said.

The speaker, Norbert Lewandowski, went on to explain how he overcame a speech impediment to become a world-renowned speaker.

Learning to Lead Through Life, the class Williams was attending, is not an ordinary business course. In this class, students attend camp during winter break. This break, the class was held at Camp Carl in Ravenna from Jan. 9 through Jan. 13.

The class, which is offered by the School of Business, can fulfill an upper-division marketing course. Community leaders and faculty work with students on various leadership skills.

The students start off the class by giving themselves a self-assessment. They identify their strengths and weaknesses and then make goals for themselves. During the semester, the students start the second part of the course. Students are paired up with a mentor who they meet with throughout the semester. Mentors help the students simplify and obtain their goals.

Anna Gosky, associate director for the Center for Student Involvement, said, “This class is unique because the students are getting perspectives from eight to 10 different faculty members.”

Gosky has been working with this class since it started. She believes students are able to make self-assessments of themselves and use that knowledge to become a better leader.

“The neat part about Learning to Lead is that the focus is on the students and their leadership style,” Gosky said. “It really is an invaluable opportunity to work one-on-one with a faculty member.”

Williams felt the same way.

“I think the class is a great experience because you get to work in small groups and meet new people,” she said. “The added bonus is that you get three college credits in one week.”

Williams enjoyed the camp and said that the activities throughout the week were a lot of fun. She especially enjoyed the scavenger hunt and was impressed with the living arrangements at the camp.

“Overall, Learning to Lead was a great experience. I learned a lot about my leadership skills and believe that this will help me some day in my profession,” Williams said.

Melissa Schlotterer, a junior accounting major, enjoyed being outside the atmosphere of wooden desks and chalkboards.

“It is a great opportunity to learn outside the traditional classroom; very few people get to experience that,” she said.

Schlotterer really enjoyed the second part of the class. She felt that her mentor was able to take her ideas and make them achievable steps.

The next session of Learning to Lead Through Life begins in June, and Williams finds it to be an opportunity not to miss.

“This class is a worthwhile and exciting class. I would recommend it to anyone,” she said.

Contact business reporter Nicole King at [email protected].