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Aurora | Age: 16 | Clinton Township, MI

Aurora | Age: 16 | Clinton Township, MI

Leadership is... not a position or title and it often requires standing back to step up, to turn vision into reality. This simply means you are not just demanding people to take certain actions but you're stepping back and allowing others to grow and be better while making an impact.

Leadership in Life... I have been involved with student council since elementary school and during my freshman year of high school, I really became passionate about leadership. It was at fall training, a leadership training institute that really sparked my passion. At that conference people were dancing on tables, screaming chants at the top of their lungs and doing ridiculous things that I never would of thought I would be doing in later years. Seeing people being completely wild and acting like their real selves in public really had an impact on me since I lost my confidence after moving school districts half way through 6th grade. Moving was a major setback for me. Fast forward a year later, I gradually continued to get more comfortable with being myself and it was at the end of my sophomore year where I really blossomed. I attended a leadership conference called MYLead because I wanted to become a better leader and even though nobody in the previous year went and could tell me what it was about, I still went and it was the best decision of my life. At MYLead, I really felt in my element and even though it felt like I completely jumped outside my comfort zone by screaming chants so loud I lost my voice, voicing my opinions in group activities and not just sitting in the back just being quiet, and even just talking and getting closer with someone I met within a span of three days more than someone I have known for years, I felt comfortable with stepping outside my comfort zone. Words can't describe how much of a positive impact the conference had on my life with not only developing my leadership skills but also my confidence.

Advice… Don't be afraid to be who you are, do the things you like to do or say what you need to say and if people hate so what, as Dr. Seuss once said "you have to be odd to be number one!" Position means nothing. To anyone who ever lost something they really wanted, you don't need a title to do good things. I lost every election I ever ran for except for the time I went unopposed and I get how it can hurt. Although you might feel sad now, be happy because you will have your time to shine, just be patient.

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