A few months ago, I put out a request for readers to share stories of practical ways to develop student leaders.
I was finishing up the manuscript for my new book, Artifical Maturity (set for release in June!), and wanted to include real-life examples from people around the world.
The response was absolutely overwhelming! I’m so thankful for everyone who took time to share ideas. There were so many more than could be included in one chapter of a book. But I wanted everyone to hear these great ideas. So here’s the plan: over the course of next year, I’ll share a story that someone submitted. I hope you find them as challenging and helpful as I did!
This week I’ll share a few short, practical ideas to develop student leaders from 3 different contributors:
1. I end most conversations with “You know you are loved!” Many will come back and say that has had an impact on them. They will either tell me thank you for telling me that you love me or thank you for telling me that Jesus loves me. As far as I am concerned they can hear either of these in that one little statement, it doesn’t really matter. Sometimes they need to feel like that I love them and sometimes they need to feel like that Jesus loves them. Usually they will respond later in life that it was a time when they needed it most.
2. I will start off every mission trip or mission experience with the following statement–“At times in a person’s life you need a mission trip more than the mission trip needs you.” This is to help them to see that this experience is greater than them.
Scott Smith, Greenwood, SC
3. The biggest impact I had on my kids and grand kids (and one I got from my dad) was this: any time, day or night, if you want a book to read, I will take you to the library or the book store. They became great readers and, as a result, great students. I firmly believe (I am a pastor but with an engineering background) that readers become lifelong learners.
Jim Liberatore, Pearland, TX
4. Each year we offer a 5-6 week class for Juniors and Seniors in High School called “College 101“. We bring in representatives from the University of Alabama to discuss transitioning into college life. Some representatives we have used are: Director of Housing Placement, Dean of Students, Academic Advisors, Greek Representatives, current college students who share of their experiences in transitioning, and Professors. This has worked very well for our students.
John Lowe, Tuscaloosa, AL
Looking for ways to develop student leaders?
Join us for the National Leadership Forum
June 28-29 – Atlanta, GA