This archived article was written by: Kaina Elias
Utah State University Eastern hosted the Leadership Summit for Leadership Day on March 16th in the Jennifer Leavitt Student Center. Leadership Day recognizes future student leaders for USU Eastern by placing them in group and individual activities and interviews. This event also shows the candidates the perks and responsibilities of their desired position, such as a spot in student government (Eastern Utah Student Association), resident advising and etc.
Serving as a student leader this past year showed me the importance,and perks, of getting involved in extra curricular activities while in college. For one, the amount of people one gets to know is significantly larger than a regular student. This is due to the fact that one is seen as a resource and is more likely to be reached out to by students looking for help.
Of course knowing more people does not necessarily mean having more friends, but the social skills developed through the human interaction is useful in all aspects of life. Gaining these attributes can also help introverted people become more outgoing and have more fun.
Another important factor to consider when aiming to be a student leader is the time devoted to the position. In the title itself – student leader – one can see that students come first. However, one must be able to manage his/her schedule in a smart and responsible manner to have time to study and fulfill duties in this position as well.
With the responsibility some positions carry, and the amount of work the leader has to do outside the classroom, any student would benefit from having the opportunity to serve in a leadership role, even if it is only a year or a semester.
The fun part, at least to me personally, involves planning events or activities for the student body or specific groups. Not only do you get to get the feedback from the students regarding the activities, such as what was awesome, what was not and what could be improved upon. The experience also allows you to meet new people, create friendships and have lots of fun with events you planned. From my experience, I can say that it is always smart to have food available for the students as well, which ends up also being beneficial for the student leaders.
Each student leader position, surely, has its differences from each other. Resident Advisers, for instance, will more than likely develop skills on how to deal with crisis situations while other positions will not. Members of the SUN Center (Serving Utah Network Center) will likely experience more gratitude and personal fulfillment by doing volunteer work than other positions. Tutors and mentors not only help students, but help themselves, since teaching is proven to be one of the most effective ways to consolidate studies and learn more.
That is only a few of the many perks that come with each position that students can apply for – like so many did on March 16. Whether a student chooses to participate and get involved with the college activities or stay isolated in their room and only focus on their studies, it is up to them.
Anyone can benefit from choosing to do more than the average student does. Being a student leader is an excellent way to do that. Anyone can choose to get more involved with the community and with the college, even if one is not in a leader ship position. Participation does not necessarily mean leading, but being present and up-to-date with what is happening on campus and participating in activities organized by the school leaders can benefit most and will likely help students enjoy the college experience more. In the end, you will most likely miss these years and wish you experienced more. Do not let regret rule your life, get involved and enjoy what could be the best years of your life.