This February, the Kravis Leadership Institute sent a select group of KLI students to participate in the 2018 Hatton Sumners Leadership Conference. Hayley Giffin ’20, Rowan Mulligan ‘18, Linnea Uyeno ’20 and Michaiah Young ’18 trekked down to Austin, Texas for three days to be inspired to lead, increase their awareness about leadership and network with emerging leaders. This conference brought together more than 180 participants who were identified as a high potential leader by their respective schools from colleges all around the U.S. and Mexico.
Taking place on the UT Austin campus, the conference was hosted in partnership with the LBJ School of Public Affairs. Upon arrival, all participants were split into small groups of 15 individuals. This small group structure enabled students to go unpack leadership topics in depth and grow a strong group of close friends. On the first day, we all grew closer to our small group and had the opportunity to listen to Julian Castro, former Secretary of House and Urban Development and San Antonio mayor, talk about his journey as a minority politician.
The next two days consisted of a combination of personalized leadership workshops, small group team building exercises and inspirational talks.
“In the mere 2.5 day conference, they were able to facilitate genuine and collaborative connections between the students,” said Rowan Mulligan ‘18. Michaiah Young ’18 remembers, “One of the most unique things we did that I believe was one of the most valuable was express our appreciation and gratitude to fellow students. This was a rich and fulfilling mindfulness experience. It fostered deeper conversations and greater authenticity among us all.”
For Linnea Uyeno ‘20, “The cool part about the conference was that students had the option to attend personalized leadership workshop sessions that fit their own leadership interests. I had the opportunity to attend sessions such as, The Power of Introverts, Team Leadership, and Virtual Leadership. My favorite activity was debriefing the Strength Based Leadership assessment. It helped me to understand how unique my leadership strengths were compared to others, and how I can leverage these strengths to effectively influence and lead people. I felt that the assessment can increased my own leadership self-awareness, and taught me that leadership is a reflective process that can be developed through self-observation.”