Monday, July 9, 2012

The Beginning

Whoo! Today is the official first day that my Women and Leadership Class begins. My nerves got the best of me and I was anxiously waiting for the clock to struck 9:30 AM to begin my new life. 

My class is in the Watson CIT building that's only a ten minute walk away from my dorm. The instructor's name is Kisa Takesue. I can already imagine myself having the best time of my life with her being my professor. If I were to describe her personality in three words it would be bubbly, open, and enthusiastic. Personally, I think if a teacher has those traits, they can make learning educational and fun at the same time. 

Class began with an introduction of our course goal and of one another. The goal is to develop a caring and engaging community. These are our following classroom rules; to be respectful, understanding, open-minded, inclusive, and mature. We also touched a little on what is teamwork. After the brief intro, we started to have ice-breakers to lessen the awkward tension in the room.

Our first activity was a name memory game. Everyone stood in a circle and had to say their name and something else that begins with their first letter. After the person before you finished, you had to recite what they said along with the many people before them. My favorite activity was when Kisa asked these random questions that made us choose which object we prefer and how it relates to us being a leader. Everyone gathered in the middle and whatever you choose you had to walk to a certain side. An example would be, which do you prefer? Peanut butter or jelly? I became so confused and didn't know what either represented. I finally made up my mind and chose the peanut butter side. The peanuts represent the obstacles in my life and the oils symbolize how I'm able to solve each problem smoothly and to be able to move forward. All of the questions were simple, the hard part was to use your creativity to think of reasons why you chose your side. This was my favorite game because each question made me think outside of the box and I believe a leader should be able to think outside of the norm. Not only is creativity important, but I liked the limited amount of time we had to choose our sides. Thinking on my feet isn't one of my strong suits so this challenged me in a positive way. 

Sneak Peak of Community Hours
Between noon and 1:30 PM is our lunch break. The eight of us traveled with our new friends to find the Ratti. It was only down the street from the Watson CIT and we made it in less than five minutes. When 1:30 came around we were back to continue our session. This time, Dean Rose managed the class. The main subject we talked about was how to effectively use our listening skills. She advised that certain words should never be used when you express your frustration. Instead of using never, always, and should, use "I"messages to get your point across.

Maddie in Deep Thought
When class ended we had free time from 4 to 7 PM. I had a mini personal tour of the campus led by myself and Abby. We were lost trying to find our way to dinner and had to walk around the school twice. After we ate, all leadership students were required to meet at the Main Green to have Community Hours. The lesson was to figure out which of the four characteristics of being a leader applies to you the most. A discussion was held of why we chose our trait and how it impacts our lives.

Nothing compares to what I experienced today. The combination of a summer college course and meeting new people makes me feel like I'm on a new planet. Everything is so new and this change will definitely prepare me for my future. 

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