While most teenagers slept in on Saturday, Mount Carmel School's student leaders got up bright and early to participate in the school's Student Leadership Retreat. Held every year, the retreat helps students grow as leaders and gives them the opportunity to work together to plan all school activities for the school year.
MCS president Galvin Deleon Guerrero facilitated the retreat, which was started with a prayer and a team-building energizer.
The energizer called the “Martian Probe” had students work in groups to transport styrofoam balls from one end of the room to the other by pulling at strings tied to a metal ring on which the ball was suspended. Since groups had to criss-cross the room, students had to not only work in their respective teams, but had to work with other teams to avoid running into each other.
The activity was followed by a TED Talks video about leadership and participants talked about what it means to be a leader. The consensus reached was that leaders are those who inspire their peers to follow a vision and fulfill a mission. All students at the retreat also committed to aligning their respective group mission statements with the school's mission “to educate the whole person to see with Christ's eyes.”
After the discussion, student leaders got down to work, planning out the entire school year. Going through week by week, Deleon Guerrero and Student Council officers invited clubs, classes, and organizations to come forward with their activity proposals. By the end of the retreat, student leaders had successfully planned out the entire year, right up to graduation in June.
For senior class president Anastasia Schweiger, the retreat gave her a new perspective about her role as a student leader.
“I thought it was really inspiring not only to hear from our teachers, but also to hear from other students, about what it means to be a leader. Especially now that we're seniors, it was motivating to know that underclassmen look up to us as role models and as leaders,” she said.
Student Council president Jimin Ryu was happy with the work they got done. “It went very well. We accomplished our planning in record time because all students worked as a team with cooperation and compromise. I'm kind of nervous, but based on what I saw, I am confident that we are moving forward with great things.”