UC students to build leadership skills

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James McClendon, Editor-in-Chief

On Friday, Oct. 21, Utica College students will be given the opportunity to participate in the 2016 Leadership Weekend at Raquette Lake. All Utica students are invited to apply for this weekend long retreat, however, there are only 30 spaces available.

Assistant Director of Student Activities, Bethany VanBenschoten, has planned the leadership weekend for the last four years.

The weekend will facilitate the interaction of student leaders from a variety of student organizations around campus.

Sophomore John Siniscarco attended last year’s leadership weekend as a student and was selected this year as a student mentor.

Siniscarco signed up for this opportunity because he wanted to help incoming students make new friends. He also felt that it would help him improve his own leadership skills.

“My goal is to encourage people to contribute their own ideas and to feel comfortable expressing their own opinions and thoughts,” Siniscarco said. “Leadership weekend is a great opportunity to be who you are as well as an opportunity to grow into the person you want to be.”

The first day of the weekend will consist of workshops that will help students develop communication skills, group dynamic skills and leadership styles. The workshop will be run by the six student mentors.

“It will give students insight into their own leadership and communication styles,” VanBenschoten said.

Day two will be all about putting those newly developed skills into use. The whole day will be spent on a high ropes course and a low ropes course.

The goals of this day are to cultivate leadership styles, build self-confidence and create a family dynamic among the students.

“The students will help each other get over their fears,” VanBenschoten said, “and push themselves to limits that they did not know they had.”

The culmination of the leadership weekend will come on the third day, when the students will present their campus improvement project to important members of the Utica campus community. These members will include newly selected President, Laura Casamento, as well as Provost John Johnsen.

The students chosen to attend the leadership weekend will also have the opportunity to eat lunch with Casamento and Johnsen.

The final task of those students in attendance will be to bring their campus improvement project back to campus and work together to put it into action.

The weekend is sponsored by Student Senate and the Office of Student Activities. There is no cost to students who participate.

In order to be considered, students must submit their applications by 11:59 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 9. For more information, head to the Office of Student Activities. It is located on the second floor of the Strebel Student Center.


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