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Some college students can go their entire four years without being confronted with an ethical dilemma in the classroom, but not a leadership major. The enormous amount of group activities paired with community projects has showed me what it means to make difficult decisions. It could be argued that taking exams and writing long research papers is what makes the college curriculum challenging, but I say its dealing with your peers and finding out how to effectively communicate with individuals to reach a common goal. The Organizational and Community Leadership program has allowed me to grow as a young man, developing my people skills and my decision-making ability when situations are not black and white, but extremely grey. These are not skills that I have always had, but they are skills I gained during the fall semester of 2012.
Personally I want to take a closing paragraph to talk about the major personally. I am so thankful to be a part of this major not only for the lessons learned but for the relationships built. I was a 19 year old mess when I came to UD. This campus and major has been my home for three years and has helped me grow and mature into the person I am today. I know I have a lot more to get better at but I am confident in my foundation to move forward and be the best I can be in my future endeavors. I would not be able to say that without the experiences I have had over the last 3 years.
My experiences in the OCL major have been life changing and extraordinarily self-reflective. Each course and professor opens my eyes to new perspectives and increases my deepen understanding of the concepts within leadership. For this, I thank each of them for their support of my education. I am especially looking forward to my experience abroad this coming winter!
This major has allowed me to step out of my comfort zone tremendously and accept that change is good, and change is necessary. Being a Leadership major means learning outside of the text book but rather doing and putting things to practice. These past four years have taught me how to interconnect and innovate with anything that comes my way, two aspects that are both important for counseling and consulting. Being an OCL major has given me confidence
Throughout my entire college career as a leadership major, I have learned so much about myself and about how other people work that I feel that I am a better person than I was. Leadership has taken me out of this narrow thinking path and I have grown into an insightful person who thinks in different ways. My long-term career goal is to be a movie director. I direct a lot of shorts and I think that my leadership skills have really helped with that. I can communicate effectively with the crew and actors for the shorts. My leadership skills helped me take the scripts for the shorts and use my divergent thinking and creative skills to take the script to another level on camera. My leadership skills helped me communicate with people so they knew what I wanted for the shots. My leadership skills helped me become a director. If I didn't have those skills, I would have to rely more on my film making abilities and anyone can learn about filmmaking. Not everyone can have a leadership foundation as immense and solid as the one we have created from taking this major.
My experiences with most of my leadership courses helped me to increase my creativity and innovation as well as my people skills. Learning how to reflect on my experiences throughout every course has increased my communication, verbal and motivation skills. The Capstone experience helped me to have a chance to motivate and teach people that were younger than me and for the first time with this major, I felt like an actual teacher. I'll never know how these Leadership professors have the passion to educate their students but I now have a newfound respect for the teachers in this major.
At the beginning of the Capstone experience I wasn't sure of my direction for next year. About a month ago, I received an offer that I couldn't refuse from Athena Health, a healthcare tech company in Watertown, Massachusetts. When I traveled to Boston for my onsite interview, I was extremely nervous leading up to the interview but felt incredibly comfortable as soon as I arrived in the visitor's center for my interview. During the interviews, I shared my experiences in the leadership major. Most people are curious about my major when I tell them about my new job. Although the OCL major is not specifically geared towards developing the next crop of healthcare transactions associates, interface designers, and software engineers, the major opened up just about every door for me at UD to eventually land this position .
The thing I attribute the success of the leadership program to the most is the people in the major. We are forced to push each other to greater limits. We are forced to work with each other and further develop our leadership skills and knowledge. The connections we make with fellow students and our professors are strong. Without each other, without my fellow leadership students, and without my leadership professors, I would not have been able to become the effective leader I am today.
When I first came to UD, I knew that I wanted to work in non-profit, so I became a business major. It wasn't necessarily my favorite area but I figured it was a track that would still take me to where I wanted to go. While I did well in my business classes, I realized that I wasn't really happy. The classes were interesting but not stimulating. I felt like the skills I was learning could only take me so far, and weren't as versatile as I was hoping. So I switched into the Leadership major, and I can honestly say it was the best academic decision I have made.
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