February 28, 2024

Applications for leadership positions were due Jan. 27 and interviews are in progress to choose students to become FOCUS leaders, resident advisers and various Community Life ministry leaders.

However, students who are paid to be leaders are not the only ones who can or should be leaders on campus or in their everyday lives.

“You don’t have to have a title to be a leader,” said Heather Hubbert, assistant dean of students for the Office of Leadership and Transitions. “If you don’t have a title, you can be involved by investing in others.”

Hubbert said leaders do not all fit the same mold, like being extroverts, but all leaders have key characteristics in common.

“A leader is someone who wants to learn and grow. You don’t have to have it all figured out but you have to be willing to learn and to intentionally develop,” Hubbert said.

Students who have been or are currently in leadership positions can use the skills they learn in order to lead in
their classrooms and their friend groups.

“Being a FOCUS leader helped me understand that I don’t know everything or the best way to do something,” said Michael Riad, sophomore business major and Fall 2016 FOCUS leader. “It taught me how to truly collaborate, make sure everyone is heard and come up with a (consensus).”

As an RA certain parts of the job can be challenging, such as the time commitment. However, Karis Mooney, sophomore business administration major and RA in North Colony, said she still learned from the experience.

“You learn and grow in a lot of practical things such as confrontation, planning, taking opportunities and working with other people,” Mooney said. “The job simply stretches and challenges you in certain areas that you can use for the rest of your life.”

One of the most important characteristics of a leader is someone who is excited to serve those around them.

“You just have to be willing to serve and have a good attitude that says, ‘Let’s serve together,’” Hubbert said.

Riad said of the qualities a leader has,  commitment is key.

“You have to be dedicated to the cause,” Riad said. “If you don’t believe in it, you will never be an effective leader.”

While taking on roles in leadership is important, the most important part of leadership is a readiness to serve and learn from others.

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