Student-Athlete Leadership Institute Fosters Personal Development
Spokane, Wash. - The 2011-2012 Student-Athlete Leadership Institute recently concluded its program. The Institute, in its second year, is operated under the direction of the Athletic Department's Life Skills Program. The Leadership Institute is designed to further develop student-athletes' leadership skills, as students, athletes, and leaders on campus and in the community. Participants from nearly every GU varsity team were selected to participate in the developmental program to further develop them as mentors and leaders on their respective teams and on the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.
The 2011-2012 group met several times and participated in team building exercises, behavior and leadership style assessments, and group discussion sessions. Guest speakers from across campus also facilitated sessions and conversations surrounding the meaning of leadership and various styles and techniques for the student-athletes to apply in their day to day lives. The participants concluded the yearlong program by coordinating and directing a field day at Grant Elementary for nearly 300 elementary students at one of Spokane's Title I schools.
Women's Rowing's Rachel Wright reflected on her experience in the program, "The Leadership Institute was a great experience because it taught me about different leadership styles as well as about my own style so that I can better impact my team and others around me. By the end of the program, it was cool to see all of us participants apply what we learned and bring a Gonzaga experience to at-risk youth at Grant Elementary."
The twelve student-athletes who completed this year's program are Taurie Bjerken (Jr., Women's Tennis), Ryan Caballero (Jr., Men's Soccer), Meredith Crenshaw (Jr., Volleyball), Victoria Fallgren (Jr., Women's Golf), Levin Guillermo (Jr., Men's Tennis), Steven Halcomb (Jr., Baseball), Emily Hutchins (Jr., Women's Soccer), Billy Moon (Jr., Baseball), Dane Pavlik (Jr., Men's Rowing), Patrick Richie (Jr., Men's Cross Country/Track & Field), Meghan Winters (Jr., Women's Basketball), and Rachel Wright (Jr., Women's Rowing).