LeaderShape is the perfect opportunity for a leader of any kind on Missouri State’s Campus. We’re talking about an entire week of inspiring, life-changing, impactful, fun! The Institute will take place June 1-6 down at Camp Windermere. If a student is accepted to the program there is a $50 registration fee – but don’t worry about that, sponsors all over campus are helping students make this experience a reality.
Students: does this sound like an opportunity you can’t pass up? We think so too. Apply here today: www.tinyurl.com/MSULeaderShape
Applications are due March 27th for students and Cluster Facilitators.
Are you a sponsor looking to help our students grow as leaders? Contact KelliFarris@missouristate.edu to lend some help. We’ve got a spot on the back of our t-shirst waiting for your department/organization’s name.
Speaking of Cluster Facilitators – we really love our faculty and staff at Missouri State. Faculty/Staff members: you have an opportunity to experience this as well! You could spend a week of your summer leading these great student leaders. Interested in facilitating our program? Email KelliFarris@missouristate.edu to get involved.
LeaderShape really can impact you, just ask Kelsea Fink!
Kelsea Fink, a junior accounting major, is a prime example of how LeaderShape really does impact and inspire the students who attend it. Kelsea shared with us some of what she learned and it sounds like she had an amazing experience. Check it out:
“It is the end of Day 4 at LeaderShape and all I can think about is how strong the word “leadership” is. The term “leadership” is so diverse and unique to everyone, yet it is soimportant and profound in our world. It can be hard. It can be emotional and confusing. It can be frustrating, but it is worth it to figure out what kind of leader we are and follow our passions using our own strengths and weaknesses. Leadership is authentic. It is accepting the fact that you may fail, and being humble when you succeed. It is never perfect and it is dynamically changing. Leadership is recognizing our own limitations and moving past them. Nobody will ever have the answer to what being a leader means. It is using ethical integrity in every decision. It is striving for inclusiveness, vulnerability, honesty, and trust. Leadership is about forming relationships with those around you, recognizing one another’s strengths and weaknesses, and using these differences to achieve goals and visions together. It is active listening, asking questions, and providing and receiving constructive criticism to those around us. It is understanding when to be quiet and letting someone else share their thoughts and beliefs. Leadership is finding out who YOU are and what YOU want. It is fighting your inner voice that tells you “I can’t” and replacing those words with “anything is possible.” It is being happy with yourself so you can lead by example. It is having a healthy disregard for the impossible. Leadership isn’t, and will not ever, be easy. It is hard work and a continuous process.”
Kelsea believes that throughout the program she found the answer to the age old question about leaders; are leaders born or made? She says she learned at LeaderShape that no leader is ever born, they are made and it will always be worth it to strive to be the leader you want to be in every aspect of your life.
“Here’s a dirty little secret about LeaderShape- you will not leave the week the same person you were walking into it. It transforms you from the inside out. It is Day 5 and as I look around at the other 60 students experiencing the Institute, I know they feel the same way I do. We are confused. We are scared. We are happy. We are 1000 different emotions all mixed into one. How do we leave this week and allow ourselves to go back to our daily routines? How can we sit back and watch unethical things happen and be okay with it? Exactly- we can’t. Because after all, we did learn that “Indecision is a decision” and if we were to sit back that would make us naïve. It is amazing that one week ago all these individuals were strangers to me, yet now I know their goals, passions, personal experiences, and visions. We have opened up to one another on levels that are indescribable. Visions were made, relationships were formed, and we were all transformed from the inside out. All of our visions are different, unique, and passionate, but most importantly all of our visions are attainable if we want them to be.”
The following are key ideas and quotes that Kelsea would like to share from her experience:
- Dreams come into being as we speak. I will speak my dreams into reality and I will achieve what I want.
- We see the world not as it is, but as we are.
- Our mind is our only limit. We must have the courage to quiet the inner voice that holds us all back, doing this will empower us to achieve our visions and goals.
- Humans get too busy doing and forget to live. Be a leader, but do not ever forget to live.
- Integrity is expensive.
- You have to change your people, your places, your things, and reflect on your life and what you want and what makes you happy. All people who made a significance difference were not changing THE world, they changed THEIR world. YOU determine your own success.
- Live like you have already accomplished your goals.
- Live authentically, always.
- Great leaders have a healthy disregard for the impossible.
- Everything in life is the perception YOU have of it.
- Embrace everything you possibly can, because one day it’ll all be gone.
- FAILURE is the best teacher.
- I cannot fix somebodies internal thoughts; I can only create the environment around them and lead by example.
- Excellence is a habit. We are what we repeatedly do.
- Leaders are born, not made.
- Leaders have all the answers.
- Leaders exist only at the top.
- Leadership is magical and mystical.
TRUISM ABOUT LEADERSHIP
- Leadership requires inner work as well as outer work.
- Leadership is about integrity and character.
- Leadership is based on trusting relationships.
- Leadership means having a healthy disregard for the impossible.
- Leadership begins with the heart and ends with results.
Did you know we sent Boomer the Bear to LeaderShape?
That’s right we literally sent Boomer the Bear to the LeaderShape Institute on July 20th. Ok, so maybe it was sophomore criminal justice major, Blake Shepheard, who just so happens to serve as Boomer the Bear at athletic events. It sounded like Blake had a life changing experience at LeaderShape and has big plans to bring what he learned back to Missouri State. Here are some things that he chose to share from the week:
We just completed day one at the LeaderShape Institute. It is really pretty awesome to be out here in the middle of Illinois with sixty ambitious student leaders from across the nation. I have met people from all over the United States! My favorite part about this experience so far is the passion and energy. Everyone here is on the same page. We all have a desire to change the world for a positive way and I am excited to see how our community continues to grow throughout the rest of the week here at Allerton Park.
This program is fast paced. Time is flying and I am having such a great time! Today we talked about the value of one, the power of all. This topic specifically resignated with me because I think student leaders often feel very capable of doing their job, especially with the size of our campus. I like to imagine a day when all of our student organizations can work together, cooperate, to reach every student and help them to engage in our campus some way. Each individual is capable of a lot, however, when we work together, we can accomplish so much more.
What a powerful day. Each participant came in with a passion and we have been working to shape and mold that in to a personal vision. Today was real. Today was powerful. We discussed the importance of challenging what is and looking to what could be. I think that many times we take our daily life for granted and assume that every second of the day is planned out, that our future is set. Today we learned that it is not. We have the ability to change the status quo and we are starting to get the resources and knowledge as to how to make that happen. It’s an awesome transformation.
Bringing vision to reality. That was the topic today. We talked about those things that keep us up at night, that ponder our brain when we are taking a final exam and that cause us to day dream when we should be focused. We discussed how to make our visions real and attainable and how to get other people on board. My favorite part of today was going around and seeing the “tomorrow’s headlines” activity. I was encouraged to know that our generation has the desire to generate change.
Living and leading with integrity can be hard, especially when dealing with those every day who have different values than yourself. For me, sticking to my core values can be a trick at times. Today we talked about the importance of staying true to yourself and how that maintains your credibility as a leader. We did some hardcore examination of who we are and committed to maintaining that even after leaving LeaderShape and returning to our campuses.
It is always exciting to attend Leadership programs. You always seem to get a “leadership high” because everyone around you has the same passion and drive as yourself. We all share pretty similar values and have experiences that unite us. The most difficult part is leaving the institute and staying in action. Our final morning consisted of discussing ways to stay encouraged and positive and ready to act when we return home. We discussed the importance of living our LeaderShape and being an example to others in our everyday life.
Although LeaderShape is only six days, we discuss “Day 7″ which is the future. It is every day, waking up with a desire to change things, encourage others and live the true compassion of LeaderShape. It is sticking to your core values in those times when giving in would be easier and it is working each day to make your vision a reality. I imagine a world where pride and dignity can be instilled in the lives of underprivileged youth and day 7 is the opportunity for me to make that happen and to work to get everyone else involved. LeaderShape transformed me as a leader, but only because I dove in head first, ready to fail and learn new things. I had no regrets and I lived in the moment 100% of the time. I have learned the importance of integrity as well as striving to make the world a better place. I encourage everyone to attend a LeaderShape Institute and I hope that it evolves you as a person as much as it did me!
Emily Cassimatis’ LeaderShape Experience!
Over the past two weeks, FIVE Missouri State students had the priveledge to attend the LeaderShape Institute in Champaign, Illinois. The LeaderShape Institute is a 6 day program that challenges participants to lead with integrity while working towards a vision grounded in their deepest values. Participants explore not only what they want to do, but who they want to be. To learn more about LeaderShape visit www.leadershape.org.
Blake Shepheard, Emily Cassimatis, and Courtney Pfluke attended the first session July 20-25 and Caleb Hearon and Keslea Fink attended the second session July 27 – August 1. We asked them to jot down a few small journal entries while they were attending the institute so that we could share their experience.
Emily Cassimatis, a junior psychology major, says she learned a lot at LeaderShape and even developed ideas that she hopes to put in place on Missouri State’s campus in the future. Here are some of her experiences:
Day 2- The Value of One, The Power of All
“Today’s lesson was a surprisingly powerful one. It seems simple- realizing one person may have a special talent but applying it to a group setting, but it was more than just that. We had the opportunity to open up to one another in our family clusters, and I realized that today meant more than just realizing how one person’s talent could relate to a group; it meant that in order to be effective as a group all its members have to understand each other on a deeper level. Today humbled me as I came to understand not only how privileged I was, but how those less fortunate than I am were doing so much more and were so much happier with much less than I could imagine.”
Day 3- Challenging What is, Looking to What Could Be
“Today we formed our “vision”- what our ideal world would look like. In my ideal world no one would have to pay for higher education. Anywhere. Can you imagine the power in that? I decided in order to make this vision a reality I could start working my “vision-magic” at MO State. My idea is to have a text book rental program that trades community service hours for free books. So a student could do 200 hours of community service for an agency approved by the school, and in turn they would get free book rentals (or at least deductions). Even that is a lofty goal! But if it could happen anywhere, it would happen at MO State. Ending the day proud to be a bear and excited to live in a state of possibility.”
Day 7- Now
“Now what? Leadershape was a powerful and exhausting experience. Through it I learned the tools to not only be a more effective leader, but a more effective dreamer. To quote Henry David Thoreau, “If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put foundations under them.” I have so many castles in the air, and I cannot wait to see what foundations this life provides me with.”
Courtney Pfluke Shares her LeaderShape Experience
Courtney Pfluke, a sophomore global studies major, had a very eye opening experience at the LeaderShape institute. Courtney completed the Distinction in Public Affairs program as a freshman and decided to strengthen her leadership skills and apply to attend the LeaderShape Institute. She currently serves as the Public Relations Specialist for the Opal Agency and the Secretary for the United Students for Fair Trade, both are areas she can really apply what she learned at LeaderShape. Here are some of her experiences from the week:
Today was an interesting day because we had the opportunity to do many different activities that really forced us to involve everyone in our group. I came to the realization that it is very easy to exclude someone from the conversation or planning about an activity and not realize that you are doing it. During our group activities, my group had judged a girl by her size and had thought that she could not lift something because she was so small. She ended up being able to do it without much of a problem. After discussing the activities in bigger groups, I feel more confident to be able to confront stereotypes and not just rise above them. I hope this will help lower discrimination in my future work place.
Today we participated in a simulation that left most of us feeling disappointed, but more aware of how the world works. I personally feel disappointed with the amount of competitiveness and vindictiveness that was shown during the game, but was proud that in the end, we tried to create a more equitable situation. While debriefing in our Family Clusters, there was a lot of tension with everyone because we were all feeling different things and having problems expressing how we were feeling, but after talking through everything that had happened, we were able to come out of the situation feeling much better than we felt going into it.
This day was cool because after working hard to create different aspects of our visions we were able to put them all together today and actually start working towards an action plan for making our visions into our reality. We also received a ton of feedback from our family cluster members, which made me more aware of some of the things I was doing and how to change some of that behavior. It also gave me the chance to see the impact I was making on other people in my group. It was a very rewarding experience seeing everything we worked for come together and seeing the determination in everyone to make these visions into reality.
LeaderBear Spotlight: Caleb Hearon
Our LeaderBear for this week is Caleb Hearon. Caleb just returned from the LeaderShape Institute, a 6 day program that challenges participants to lead with integrity while working towards a vision grounded in their deepest values. Participants explore not only what they want to do, but who they want to be. (To learn more about LeaderShape visit www.leadershape.org.) Here is a little bit about what he learned during his experience:
“LeaderShape was a tremendous experience! I guess one thing I really learned was to stop thinking of leadership as a lofty idea. Leadership isn’t something for CEO’s, VP’s of this, or President’s of that. Leadership is something we choose to do every single day. The way we interact with friends, the choices we make, and the attitude we choose to show up with all contribute to being a leader. The problem today is that we all look at people like MLK, Jr. and JFK and say, “Wow, those people really did something!” But we neglect to think of the thousands of regular people who marched behind them, hung flyers, and made a difference just like them.”
Over the course of this coming academic year, Caleb will put what he learned to use. He will team up with the 4 other Missouri State students who attend the LeaderShape Insitute (Kelsea Fink, Blake Shepeard, Courtney Pfluke, and Emily Cassimatis) and plan the very first Missouri State sponsored LeaderShape. Caleb seems very excited:
“We tend to get complacent in what we’ve learned and experienced. Truth is – you’re never done growing as a leader. If you think you are, you’re wrong. There’s always more to learn, more to do, and more to give! Those are some of the things I reflected on during my week at LeaderShape. I am so beyond thankful to have had this opportunity to learn, represent MSU, and meet student leaders from across the country! This experience is just one more reason I love Missouri State and the opportunities it offers students.”
On campus Caleb is just going into his sophomore year as an Organizational Communication major. He completed the Commerce Bank Emerging Leaders and Distinction in Public Affairs programs his freshman year. Caleb also won Fraternity Freshman of the Year for FSL last year. He is very involved in other areas on campus serving as the philanthropy chair of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, a member of the 2014 Homecoming Committee, Social Media Manager for the Standard, a member of many other organizations, and has had awesome opportunities like interning for Claire McCaskill.
His top strengths are: Activator, Communication, Competition, Futuristic, and WOO.
When asked what about our programs impacted him the most he replied,
“Completing the Emerging Leaders and Distinction in Public Affairs programs has been a wonderful experience. I think what has had the biggest impact on me has been the connections with others. I know the friends I’ve worked with in these programs will be leaders on this campus for years to come. It inspires me to work with such great people – faculty and staff included.”
His advice to younger students:
“Everybody’s experience is unique and different. That in mind, my advice for younger students would simply be to figure out what you want out of Missouri State. Decide what you want to have accomplished in 4 years, then do it.”