Mid-Year Leadership Retreat Gives Strong Start to 2013
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Posted by: Teri Forsythe
In its third year, the Mid-Year Leadership Retreat once again proved to be an excellent opportunity for 35 of Chi Psi's undergraduate leaders to build relationships, share ideas and best practices and learn skills in leadership and Alpha management.
With financial support from The Chi Psi Educational Trust, Inc., #1s and other undergraduate leaders gathered outside Nashville, Tenn. from January 3-6 for a leadership training retreat facilitated by Central Office staff and trained peer facilitators.
Used as companion programming to the Spencer Institute, The Mid-Year Leadership Retreat provides our Alphas' leaders with the necessary tools to effectively oversee strong daily operations while allowing them to build relationships with other undergraduate leaders and learn from one another's best practices.
"The opportunity to connect and network with my fellow undergraduate Brothers from around the country was honestly the most rewarding and beneficial aspect of the Mid-Year Leadership Retreat," says Iota Recruitment Chairman Matt Awad '14. "It was truly amazing the amount of different ideas and strategies that other Brothers had for Alpha leadership and management, and combining them all in one open forum for discussion was without a doubt a catalyst in driving effective ways to successfully implement those ideas and strategies at our respective Chi Psi Alphas."
That sentiment was echoed by Michael Herbert '14, President of Chi Psi's newest Interest Group at Yale, saying "The strongest benefit was the ability to speak to delegates from every Alpha in the country and pick their brains about specific operations, particularly what works well, what doesn't, and what Chi Psi really means. Though much of this occurred through structured activities, a lot of it also came from just being able to interact with the other delegates."
The Program for Excellence served as the cornerstone of this year's Retreat as undergraduates were taught new ways to understand and implement the program in their Alpha's daily operations, and participants received a draft version of a new Guide to the Program for Excellence that the Central Office is developing. An online version of that guide is already live at www.chipsi.org/programforexcellence.
Matt Sorkin, President of Alpha Colony, comments "The Program for Excellence packet will be very helpful for running my Alpha. It is very detailed and it allows me to bring something tangible back to my Alpha. The events are fun and they eliminate not having event ideas. Also, the 30 second elevator pitch [we developed in team meetings] will help me have a plan for persuading my members."
With a mix of high-level presentations, discussion exercises and team building activities, the undergraduates were able to develop stronger leadership skills while learning best practices for general Alpha operations, risk management, recruit and pledge education.
Participants have commented that the Retreat is a great opportunity to refresh their knowledge of their duties in leading an Alpha while allowing them to bond with Alphas on shared difficulties and successes.
Feedback from this yea'rs Retreat has been extremely positive thus far, and we hope to continue to develop this exciting program in the future. The Chi Psi Educational Trust, Inc. still seeking the necessary funding to secure this future of the Mid-Year Leadership Retreat. If you would like to give to the Trust to ensure this program continues, click here and designate "Mid-Year Leadership Retreat" in the comments section.