• 2014–2015 Provost's Initiatives

    "Developing Leaders for Today and Tomorrow," Kerry Stockwell & Jason Verdugo, Athletics

  • Course Description:

    The course Developing Leaders for Today and Tomorrow was designed to explore four key elements to leadership: Leading oneself, connecting with others, leading others, and changing culture. Images were used as a learning tool. For example, hot air balloons were depicted to address the need to give people compliments and encouragement. Simply put, the air in the balloon must be continually filled up in order to go up. As stated in our syllabus and quoted by the author of our course materials, Tim Elmore, the course was designed to “identify and strengthen habits and attitudes that will assist students in their leadership development.” Many students in the course were relieved that this course did not just tell them how to be a good leader. They were appreciative of the format of the course which included real issues that some well-known leaders have faced, film clips which emphasized the leadership topic each day, speakers, in-class activities that directly tied to those same topics, and a lot of in-class discussion on both course topics and current news related to those topics. The three speakers for the course were all able to connect their topics to course material in ways that made it more real for the students. As a result of the having these speakers, student personality traits were discovered, conflict resolution skills were practiced, and students learned that even high profile leaders have doubts and fears.

    Suggested Next Steps: 

    We will continue to refine the curriculum to include more exposure to various leaders from a variety of settings. One opportunity may be to have a leader currently living in another state speak via Skype. Another opportunity may be for students to reach out to a leader in the community and arrange coffee or lunch with that leader. Students would then share that experience with classmates while connecting what they learned from that leader with course material. Additionally, on a different topic, it would be beneficial for the students to the DISC profile earlier in the course because knowing oneself is such a key component to leadership.

    Resources: 

    •  Group Project Assignment (Stockwell and Verdugo's Comment: "This assignment was significant to the student learning experiences in this course. It required that students utilize multiple teaching strategies to not only grab the attention of their peers and spark their interest, but also fascinate them in a manner that would best initiate the understanding and potential application of the chosen Habitude which is defined by Habitudes creator Tim Elmore as an image that forms leadership habits and attitudes. It was evident that there was a personal connection student presenters had with their chosen Habitude and there was a clear excitement felt by their peers and instructor. With all of these factors in place, the likelihood of student use of Habitudes to exhibit specific leadership qualities was increased.")