Learning Leadership

Monitors around the room lit up as the students in Baylor’s LEAD program showed off their semester’s work through electronic portfolios. The LEAD Celebration event was Dec. 2 on the fifth floor of Cashion Academic Center.

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Baylor’s School of Education offers the LDS 1301 Introduction to Leadership class and also offers a leadership minor through the Department of Educational Administration. Students learn about different leadership theories and have the chance to put those theories into practice by volunteering around Waco. Students also study social issues in the media and attend the Leadership Lecture series, where presenters share life experiences of overcoming obstacles.

The December presentation allowed the students a chance to showcase their leadership journey through this semester. It was impressive to see how students creatively showcased their personal leadership, said Lindsey Freed, assistant director of enrollment management and advising in the School of Education, who teaches a section of the class.

“I believe students take away a foundation of leadership that does not fit into a box or a singular template,” Freed said. “Students take away a clearer understanding of their strengths and how to use those in the context of leadership.”

This event marked the first time students used electronic portfolios to display their work. In previous years, students produced tri-fold posters about leadership models and reflections.

Dr. Karon LeCompte, assistant professor in Curriculum and Instruction in SOE believes the online portfolios will give the students an edge in the workplace, because their work is archived and they can add to it in the future.

“The objective is for students to showcase their work and to be able to carry with them this work for the future. They can build upon these philosophies and models to use in the future,” LeCompte said.

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Freshmen Ejay Mallard and Grace Kim both used multi-media elements in their individual presentations — music, pictures, quotes, Youtube videos, video clips, journal articles and personal reflections that illustrated their personal leadership styles. All the students were required to write a personal mission statement and philosophy to express how they can be a leader.

Kim said, “This was really important to me because I’ve never in my life had to say, ‘What is your mission for your life?’ or ‘What is your philosophy?’ This helped me figure out what I am passionate about and how I want to live my life.”

Mallard believes the class sets you up for different kinds of leadership roles.

“The leadership program embodies a lot of traditions and values which I believe are very much needed as a leader,” Mallard said. “Maybe you’ll be a CEO of a company or a manager at McDonald’s, but you’ll still know how to carry yourself.”

Click below to look at e-portfolios of a few students

Grace Kim

Ejay Mallard

Stacie McLaury

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Originally posted on Instant Impact

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