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LEAD program promotes leadership in students

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Tyler Hobson is the advisor for the LEAD program. Photo courtesy of csupueblo.edu
Tyler Hobson is the advisor for the LEAD program. Photo courtesy of csupueblo.edu

The little known Leadership Education and Development Program at Colorado State University-Pueblo is using its resources to turn students into leaders.

The LEAD program was established to create leaders who are confident in themselves and their leadership abilities. It also provides an outlet for students to think bigger than themselves and make positive changes.

Many students on campus are not aware of this program or what it consists of. For the 2015-2016 school year at CSU-Pueblo, only 10 students have signed up for the program.

Tyler Hobson, graduate assistant in the Student Engagement and Leadership Office and coordinator of the program, is striving to change that.

A goal of CSU-Pueblo’s has been to promote leadership on campus and in its students. The LEAD Program does just that for students.

“I want to help students improve their leadership skills,” Hobson said.

The program gives students the ability to step up and be leaders in the field they are getting into.

Students can apply to the LEAD program at any time during the school year. The program is structured for students to complete it in a year, but they are able to take up to four years if needed to complete it.

Along with applying, the LEAD Program expects that individuals are current CSU-Pueblo students and have a GPA of a 2.75 at the time of completion.

The program also requires that students document 100 hours of experience in four different activity areas, complete four different online modules, and choose between completing a capstone paper, website or presentation reflecting personal growth and impact on others. Students also have to sign an ethics statement upon program completion.

This year Hobson reworked the program to be more student friendly when it comes to time management, marketing and its content. Hobson said that in previous years, students had a hard time completing some of the requirements because they were not able to make up any of the conferences or events that they could not attend.

“I think the program is key for our students at CSU-Pueblo,” Hobson said.

He said he believes it provides an opportunity to help build skills that future employers are looking for after graduating college. Most of the skills employers look for aren’t necessarily taught in the classroom such as being able to speak in front of people, teamwork, collaboration and more.

Some learning outcomes that students can gain from the program include increased self-awareness, recognition of impact on groups and community, ability to understand application of learned skills and to be more prepared for interviews and jobs after college.

“The program forces you to get involved on campus because while you are in the program you have to be on a student organization leading by example and with your passion,” Hobson said.

He also said the program helps students become citizens of the community due to the requirement of completing 50 percent of the community service hours from an off campus organization.

“Everyone should take advantage of the opportunity. They wont regret it,” Hobson said.