There’s no better way to develop leadership skills than to practice, practice, practice. That is exactly what Dathan Mickem and Wyatt Parks, students at Rolla Junior High School, did while recently attending the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s Leadership in Practice program.
These students joined more than 120 high school students who were selected as future leaders from schools across the state. Held on June 25 to 28 on the Westminster campus in Fulton, Mo., Leadership in Practice is designed to provide young Missourians with the opportunity to learn what it takes to be an effective leader in their schools and communities.
All participants were students between their freshman and sophomore years in high school. With help from Missouri business leaders, civic leaders and educators, the students learned firsthand about how to successfully work together as a team and individually as a leader.
“They were immersed in leadership activities that simulated real-life situations,” said Dan Mehan, Missouri Chamber President and CEO. “Working in diverse, collaborative groups, these student leaders gain key insights into how to effectively lead in challenging situations.”
Working in small groups, the students developed business plans for a new product or service during the Entrepreneurship Challenge. During a Model UN simulation, students engaged in debate on nuclear weapons. Participants were also encouraged to set goals to further develop their leadership skills and were challenged to go back to their schools and communities to play more active roles leading their peers.
The Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry applauds the efforts of these future leaders and the potential that they bring to our state. Leadership in Practice is part of a youth leadership educational program that was created by the Missouri Chamber of Commerce in 1962. It is funded through scholarships provided by state businesses and civic organizations. This year’s program was co-hosted by the Jenny and Warren Erdman Foundation, the KC Southern Foundation, and sponsored by Edward Jones Investments and The Doe Run Company.