Welcome back Missouri State Bears! As the new month begins it is time to start thinking about the months ahead. Scheduling fall classes is just around the corner and what better idea than to search all your options? One option is to consider applying to serve as a Peer Leader. The application for fall 2024 peer leaders opens soon, learn more below.
What is Peer Leading?
Peer leading provides students at Missouri State University with the opportunity to partner with a GEP 101 professor to lead and educate students on campus involvement, time management, critical thinking, campus resources, the public affairs mission, and more critical knowledge needed to succeed at the university. The exact role of a peer leader can be unique for each individual leader, but there are some general roles that all peer leaders fulfill. These roles include:
- serving as a positive role model for students,
- aiding students in their questions,
- providing assistance to the course instructor,
- helping students become connected to the university, and
- gaining leadership experience.
The time commitment for peer leaders includes attending the GEP 101 course twice a week, attending the IDS 310 leadership course once a week, and any additional preparation that is needed to appropriately fulfill the roles. This results in approximately only five hours per week to make an impact and enhance student success through leadership. Peer leaders gain other benefits as well such as receiving 16 hours of university service hours, earning one credit hour for the IDS 310 course at no cost, gaining desired skills, receiving peer-leading apparel, and more. Becoming a peer leader will allow students to grow in their own capabilities and impact the lives of first-year students at Missouri State University.
“My Peer Leader in my GEP class helped me through one of my toughest semesters.” – 2022 GEP 101 student
How Can You Apply to be a Peer Leader?
If you are interested in applying to become a peer leader, we encourage you to attend one of the two peer leader information sessions. These sessions will be on Thursday, February 8th, from 12:30-1:15 p.m. and Monday, February 12th, from 12:30-1:15 p.m. via Zoom. During the information sessions, although the information sessions are optional, they will give you the opportunity to learn about peer leading in more detail and ensure that you meet the needed requirements to apply. Next, fill out the application and ask two people to submit references for you. These application and reference forms can be found on the First Year Programs website the Peer Leadership section. After completing the application and the needed reference forms, Dr. Glaessgen will contact you via email to schedule an interview.
Zoom Information Sessions
Thursday, February 8th, 2024: (zoom link will be available on the Peer Leader recruitment page on February 8th)
Monday, February 12th, 2024: (zoom link will be available on the Peer Leader recruitment page on February 12th)
The Impact of Being a Peer Leader.
When we reached out to previous peer leaders we learned that peer leaders make an impact but are also impacted greatly themselves.
“I feel that I have helped three generations of freshman students have a positive first experience in a college classroom which hopefully allows for them to become more involved and more successful during their time at MSU.” –Zoe
“Peer Leading has helped me learn what aspects of leadership I am good at and what aspects I still need to improve, and I think it has had a positive impact on me in this way.” – Daniel
“Peer Leading has helped me grow my leadership skills but also interact with others as well. I learned to adapt to new situations and to be flexible in my leadership abilities. I have altered my perspective on what it means to be a leader.” – Melyssa
“I felt like I positively impacted Missouri State through my role as a peer leader by speaking about the variety of resources offered here. Not many students take advantage of resources like the Bear Claw, Clubs, and others like the Bear Pantry. MSU offers these to help students challenge any problems they might have. By speaking about it, it helps more students understand the importance of accessing them.” – Grace
A list of requirements can be found in this post and on the Peer Leadership Recruitment website. Peer leading is a great opportunity for those who are looking to find new effective techniques, helpful resources, and problem-solving skills, as well as for those who want to make new friendships; have a positive support system, a networking opportunity, and develop leadership skills.
— Aubrey Hardy and Olyvia Buzzanga