This term the College ran a program for our aspiring Year 8 leaders. 25 students nominated to be part of the inaugural program which looked at different ways to lead, how we can lead in our own contexts and what it means to be a leader in the “way of Champagnat”. The program was not only for our young men who wanted to apply for leadership positions but also those who were not keen on applying for a badge and just wanted to discover more about leadership in their own context.
Many things this year have not run as expected and so our live event become two online sessions which our Year 8 leaders adapted to extremely well. The ideas they came up with throughout both sessions and the depth and detail in their reflections gave a real sense of hope to the staff as we saw these young leaders flourish and develop. The first session was with Luke Mason who has worked for Collingwood Football Club and the Melbourne Renegades. He shared what leadership can look like in words and actions and he demonstrated this through a number of different examples from across the world of sport. Our Youth Ministers Lachlan Scott and Ronan Long then spent the second session developing and deepening our understanding of what it means to lead in the Marist way.
Many of the aspiring leaders wanted to share their experiences and their learning because they felt they had grown as young men and young leaders. They have written their reflections and ideas below. My experience throughout the Aspiring Leaders program has been truly astonishing. I, along with many others, were taught about leadership and how to resemble a good leader. We spoke about qualities that are necessary and the mindset that is vital on your journey to truly become an aspiring leader. Many guest speakers joined the virtual meeting and taught us about the characteristics of a leader, we later dug deeper into the five Marist characteristics and spoke about them in depth, analysing how they can assist us on our road to become the best leaders we possibly can. Overall the Aspiring Leaders program was an astounding experience.
I have learnt that leaders are everywhere, and being a leader is having the strength and courage and humility to lead even without recognition. Leading is about serving those whom you lead and not the other way around. Leaders should be zealous to help. Leaders should juxtapose their ideas and others to pick the best one. They should not be cavalier about their badge and rather wear it as motivation. They should be gregarious and not be stiff. I have learnt these values from the program and highly recommend it to everyone.
Recently I attended online the Aspiring Leaders Program, where myself and fellow year 8’s learned and discussed about being a leader, what leading is, what a leader looks like, being open and learning about what it means to be Marist and the meaning of the Charism. Being a leader to me is not just wearing a badge or having a title. It is about being there for your fellow brothers, teachers, staff and community.
I learnt that leaders aren't the people that have badges; they are the people who show leadership every day, and through thick and thin. They are the people willing to stand by someone’s side when times get tough. Leaders can be anyone with the right mindset.
After participating in the aspiring leaders program I have learned a lot and it has helped me to grow my leadership skills, the program have really shown me that there is a lot more to leadership then I first believed and the role of leader is not just to wear a badge.