Campus Leadership: How to Build Effective Leadership Skill on Campus
As the Secretary of the Student Forum on Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, I had the privilege to work with an amazing group of student leaders through our Student Union Government. I believe that being a leader is about finding those opportunities where the work you do brings you great joy and enthusiasm. For some, that might mean being president of student union government. For others that might mean playing a supportive role on any team. However, no single way to be a leader is greater than another, and all are better than no leadership experience whatsoever.
This days companies and organization often asks job applicants for years of experience either in leadership or experience on the job being advertised. This tends to put many applicants off because they haven’t being on any. Once you graduate university when you never had any campus leadership experience, what are you going to do? Effective leadership skills are essential to everyone on campus from fresh students to stale students and everyone. Thankfully, higher institutions offers several leadership opportunities for students.
This is one of the more obvious ways to become a leader. This allows you to experience the club as a member before deciding if it is something you truly want to invest your time with. As an active member you get to learn how the club works, suggest ideas, help with events, and meet other like-minded individuals. If there’s a certain club position you’re interested in, showing the club how you’ll be great for the position is important. Remember to attend meetings, be involved, and remain respectful of your other club members.
Faculty and departmental positions
There are many positions that are open to you in both your department and/or faculty. Gaining a seat in the faculty or department isn’t impossible but it should be something you are deeply interested in since it requires commitment. Make yourself available to fill a position there. This will help to expose you and prepare you for the life after campus. Never shy away from leadership positions. They are there to help groom you and shape your experience.
This is often something aimed by extremely ambitious students wanting to do more on campus. Student government is more than a resume booster, it is an honorable position because you get elected by your peers in order to represent their needs and concerns to the school. Besides president and vice-president positions, there are many other positions you can vie for.
Other places you can gain campus leadership experience are; church, your classroom either as a coordinator or course rep, student ambassador, your local government groups (kparakpor), and many other groups. All you have to do is to identify the ones on your campus and show your interest by joining. Remember the goal is to grow and enhance your leadership.