Leadership Day 2015: Everyday Leadership


Haley Dick, Staff Writer

Notre Dame Prep held its 2015 Leadership Day on Thursday, March 12th. The day’s organizer was freshman religion teacher, Ms. Susan Muth, who, along with other faculty members including Ms. Connelly, Ms. Gottschalk, and Ms. Schiavone, put forth a great deal of effort to make it possible. When asked how Leadership Day began, Ms. Gottschalk said, “The idea for the day grew out of the Middle States evaluation process that was called Validating the Vision.  One of the objectives of that process was to promote leadership as well as help inform students about all aspects of leadership.  It was decided to devote a day to the various aspects of leadership and to involve our own students as leaders for the various events.” This year’s theme for Leadership Day was everyday leadership and was clearly displayed in the video that was created and presented to the student body. Ms. Schiavone chose that theme “because it is all-inclusive, reminding girls that they do not have to hold an elected position to be a leader; how finding the courage to speak the truth in all situations pushes back against use bullying, racism, marginalization, etc.”

For the upper level students, the day was organized into two main rotations: the freshman and sophomore rotations, and the junior and senior rotations, both of which contained speakers and student lead activities. Teachers nominated students that they felt embodied leadership throughout their day-to-day lives to assist with a few of the rotations. All of the upper level students were provided with a Chic-Fil-A lunch (woot, woot!), and ate it with their little sisters. Following lunch, there was a short team building activity for the big and little sisters to do together. Then, the students of Notre Dame were blessed with a speech by a 2010 alumna, Shelby Perkins, who shared her stories and memories of sadness, love, and daily leadership roles with all. She gave a really powerful speech that comforted and empowered many.

Being fueled by Shelby’s wonderful words, the classes split into their first rotations to experience more examples of leadership. The freshman and sophomore rotations consisted of an activity called “What is your color?”, a speech and debate exercise, and a panel of recent NDP alumnae who embody some form of everyday leadership and were eager to share their stories and advice with their fellow NDP sisters. The junior and senior rotations consisted of team-building, body language, and an alumnae panel of prior NDP girls in the college and career world who reflected on the importance and roles of leadership beyond the walls of Notre Dame. According to Ms. Muth, Leadership Day was created “to provide opportunities for students to plan and lead activities as well as invite alum speakers to inform/inspire our entire community.” Grace Haus ’17 said, “I enjoyed everything. In general, all of the alumnae were incredibly inspiring and captivating. I really thought about what each speaker said and was truly amazed. The stories they told, the service opportunities they accomplished, and advice they gave us was awesome and very thought-provoking.” As shown through the reaction by Grace, the day was an overall success that gave many Notre Dame girls the opportunity to recognize and reflect upon their daily leadership roles and actions, and allowed the student body to bring into focus the important topic of leadership.