Every February for nearly the last two decades, students, faculty, staff, and alumni come together for the Lafayette Leadership Institute.
This year’s institute, themed “Pards in Progress: Leadership Under Construction,” allowed more than 200 first-year and sophomore “emerging” student leaders to learn about the successes and failures of some of the best and brightest people in their fields.
Made possible by the Class of ’68 Leadership Fund, the institute is presented on campus by the Lafayette Leadership Education Committee and the Office of Student Life Programs. It consists of a keynote address with three blocks of educational sessions, an alumni panel presentation, alumni round table discussions, leadership resources, and a leadership recognition ceremony.
As a student leadership intern, neuroscience major Glen Robinson ’13 (Brooklyn, N.Y.) was involved in every aspect of the planning, from selecting topics and inviting alumni and speakers to preparing the schedule and institute brochure. This gave him a unique perspective on the conference.
“It has forced me to think about the underlying mechanisms of leadership and how best to tailor the conference to suit the students’ needs,” he says.
Workshop sessions covered topics including strategic planning, socially just leadership, conflict resolution, running effective meetings, social media, thinking creatively, leadership style, and event planning.
The keynote address, “Managing Your Personal Leadership Journey,” was presented by Lafayette Trustee Bob Sell ’84, group chief executive of Accenture’s Communications, Media & Technology Operating Group. He discussed how leadership and characteristics of strong leaders are not random happenings, but skills and abilities to be nurtured and honed throughout a lifetime.
Panelists included Berrisford Boothe ’83, a professional artist and associate professor of art at Lehigh University; Kat Darula ’95, principal consultant for the field studies and evaluation team at Kaiser Permanente health care provider; Jen Gsell ’04, producer on MTV’s Emmy Award-winning series MADE; Dane Hanson ’07, division engineer plans officer for the Army’s 25th Infantry Division; and Sherry Welsh ’85, founder and president of Blue Sky Transformations. The panel moderator was Taaha Mohamedali ’11, Lafayette admissions counselor.
Faculty and staff also served as presenters for workshop sessions including Daniel Bahner, assistant director of residence life; Courtney Bentley, director of instructional technology; Annette Diorio, vice president for campus life and senior diversity officer; John McKnight, dean of intercultural development; Julie A. Mulé, associate director of residence life; Janice Pigga, coordinator of facilities management and evening events; Nandini Sikand, assistant professor of film and media studies; and Bonnie Winfield, associate dean of intercultural development and director of the Landis Community Outreach Center.
The 2012-13 Lafayette Leadership Education Committee consists of Bahner; Brad Borman ’14, intern leader; Pam Brewer, associate dean of students and committee chair; Alan Childs, professor of psychology, Jaclyn Fonteyne ’13; Sarah Frohnapfel ’13; Shehtaz Huq ’14; Erin Jennings, assistant director of career services; Brooke Kohler ’13; Tatiana Logan ’13; Kaitlyn McKittrick, associate director of athletics; McKnight; Rachel Moeller, executive director of alumni relations; Rachel Peña ’14; Robinson; Rachael Trupp ’14; Stuart Umberger, director of fraternity and sorority life; and Sicheng “S.C.” Wang ’14.