Who wouldn’t want to come to an informative session free of charge when there are Oreo cookies involved? Not to mention the opportunity to receive practical tips on various leaderships skills applicable to any workplace, club meeting or class setting. Surprise, this was precisely what took place on Tuesday, May 15, when students dropped by the C Building to attend the final chapter of the monthly Leadership Seminar series held by the Bellevue College Leadership Institute.
The Leadership Institute here on campus sponsors a number of programs open to all students in response to their leadership and organizational needs.
These programs include free two-credit leadership courses, multiple leadership conferences, Bellevue College’s Annual Camp Casey Leadership Retreat in June, as well as a series of monthly leadership seminars from October to May, the last of which was held this past week.
Over the months these seminars have provided high quality leadership training to students, especially those involved in various organizations and clubs.
“We give students a strong baseline on which to build the competencies and skills necessary for their future experience,” said José Sampelayo (better known as Skip,) the volunteer instructor and advisor from the Leadership Institute who also coordinates the Leadership Seminar series.
The final seminar of the 2011-2012 academic year served as a “wrap up marathon” as Sampelayo said, of all the various leadership topics covered over the past three quarters.
Six main topics were highlighted, and Sampelayo made the impressive feat of giving each subject a comprehensive focus complete with background and an open discussion over the course of an hour. He covered recruitment (or rather, the three “R”s: recruitment, retention and recognition), publicity and event planning, emotional intelligence, high performance teams, influence or negotiation and conflict resolution.
Despite the time constraints for tackling such a wide range of material, this event was not a simple lecture in which the instructor drones on and on over textbook definitions. After a brief overview of each topic, Sampelayo applied these concepts for effective leadership to real world situations while the students were free to ask questions or make comments.
With 30 years of experience working at Boeing, Sampelayo had a deep reservoir of practical knowledge in management and organization which enhanced his presentation of the topics.
“When I started working at Boeing in 1979, the environment was very individually-based,” Sampelayo commented while covering the characteristics of effective teams.
He went on to explain how internal competition at Boeing often sparked the pointing of fingers and lack of trust which destroys motivation.
“As Boeing began to realize, committed teams which properly define their vision, mission, goals and objectives can be much more successful,” he said in introducing the Together Everyone Achieves More (TEAM).
One did not have to have attended every single seminar to understand the concepts either.
“He made everything very easy to follow and summarized nicely,” said Maye, one of the students attending the Leadership Seminars for the first time, “I would like to take one of the leadership classes here next quarter.”
“I think this kind of thing is exactly what we need,” student TJ commented about the Leadership Institute. “I like the values promoted by this group and support all that they do here.”