Christian Leadership Retreat trains Student Leaders
On June 4 the Campus Ministry Office sponsored a Christian Leadership Retreat and Workshop at the Incarnation Center in Ivoryton, CT. Students were recommended by faculty and staff members and then invited to apply. In the end, 28 students participated and contributed to this experience. The focus of this retreat is to afford the students the opportunity to name for themselves what leadership means to them and how they may apply their leadership skills in everyday life. The students spent time during this experience in dialogue with their peers. There is also opportunity to reflect individually on their leadership style. New this year students signed up for individual workshops focused on skill development. The workshop topics included: our motivation as leaders, giving a witness talk, facilitating small groups, leadership in the classroom and the Prep community and planning effective meetings. Students were introduced to the idea of Christian Leadership with Jesus’ own life as the example. Jesus’ leadership is service-oriented and the idea here is to think of how we can put others’ needs before our own. Students also participated in a high (zip line) and low ropes course where they worked as a team to accomplish tasks set for the by the Incarnation Center Staff. Students created leadership mission statements and these will be displayed in the new Campus Ministry space. As a way of following up with this student group, monthly meetings will be held which will continue to emphasize skill development and how the students are doing with their leadership mission statements.
The primary goal with this retreat is to get the students to think of leadership as a way of life. It is not only about being a retreat leader, a sports team captain, or club president or student government member. It is also about being a leader in the classroom, hallways, cafeteria, and home. Leadership does not have an on/off switch which we flip when it suits us but it is a part of our identity and what makes us different from other schools. Throughout the year Campus Ministry’s Student Leadership Team meets Mondays after school and during this upcoming year we will be discussing the highs and challenges of our Christian leadership; all students are welcome at these meetings. Our students need to know the adults of the community are there to support them daily in their leadership and not just when we need something out of them. A big thank you to the adults who assisted and contributed their time and talent: Brian Camus, Fr. Bill Eagan, SJ, Charlie DiCenso, Bob Ford, Jenn Mauritz, Rudy Mauritz, Matt Sather, and Jane O’Reilly. For more information about leadership opportunities at Prep including the Campus Ministry Student Leadership Team contact Elliott Gualtiere, Director of Campus Ministry.