Students learn to lead at conference

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In a time when intercollegiate athletics, intramural football rivalries and academic achievement qualifications fuel the healthy and passionate competition between Christian universities, it is refreshing to have a weekend of events dedicated to unifying and inspiring the most influential members from each respective college: the student leaders.

Each spring, after each university has selected its student leaders for the upcoming fall semester, a committee of representatives from many Christian universities across California gets together to plan and execute the Christian College Leadership Conference.

While the specific events, breakout sessions and guest speakers at the conference may change from year to year, the underlying and highly stressed theme and objective of unity remains perfectly clear and permanent.

Heather Hubbert, assistant dean of students – assessment and conference coordinator, stressed the importance of unity being implemented into the conference’s events.

“We want to keep the conference from becoming a competition amongst the different schools,” Hubbert said. “Instead we want them to be able to openly share ideas and concepts that have proven to be successful on their own campuses.”

On average 10-15 Christian universities are represented at the CCLC with a total number of students usually hovering around 1,000.

This year, CBU plans to send around 230 student leaders as well 12 or 13 staff members from each student leadership office on campus, including resident assistants, focus leaders, office of spiritual life interns, international student assistants, Associated Students of California Baptist University officers and admissions hosts and interns.

Although students from each leadership position will be attending, the conference is not designed or segregated based on leadership roles.

This year’s keynote speaker is Josh Riebock, a professional author and public speaker who focuses tremendously on college-aged youth.

That will be followed by breaout sessions focused around leadership topics such as time management, setting boundaries and mentorship instead of individual leadership groups.

According to Hubbert, the conference is a “start to student leadership training” with the goal of helping students bond to gain encouraging and useful insight into better leadership skills and concepts through the efforts of multi-school unity.

Hubbert, the CBU staff leaders involved and the committee members as a whole have three main objectives for all of the student leaders in attendance: to explore, inspire and unite each student with their fellow student leaders and student leaders from other schools.

This is done to better equip and establish them as successful student leaders on their home campuses so that they might better lead and grow the students that are following them.

The conference will be held on Saturday, April 9 at Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, Calif.