• Why Is There a Critical Need for Student Leaders? • What Is the Difference Between the Shared Leadership Model vs. the Traditional Leadership Model • How Can Students Develop Leadership Skills during College Years? • What Is the Relationship Between Leadership and Mentoring? • What Are Resources for Student Leadership Development?
Faculty Mentor Program Professor Glenn Omatsu, Coordinator California State University, Northridge c/o Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) 205 University Hall (818) 677-4151
The Critical Need for Student Leaders
Ask staff from community organizations about what they feel students need to learn in college, and you will hear a common answer: Students need to learn …show more content…
In a roomful of 30 to 40 college students, how many would consider themselves leaders? If we were to ask them directly, only a handful would answer affirmatively. However, what would happen if we were to ask this same group a slightly different question: “How many of you are able to work well with others and get things done together?” Probably most would raise their hands. What’s going on here? Like most other Americans, students today have a stereotyped image of what constitutes a leader, and this stereotype is anchored in a concept of leadership that emerged over the past few centuries mainly in the Western world. According to this traditional approach, a leader is a strong and powerful individual — someone who makes decisions, commands many others, and speaks with charisma. A leader is the rare human being who embodies special qualities only rarely found in one person; in fact, from this very definition, most human beings are seen as followers and not leaders. Almost always, this image of a leader is that of an older male, and usually it is associated with CEOs in corporations, the U.S. President, and generals in the U.S. military. Not surprisingly, leaders in all these institutions are older men and overwhelmingly white. Could this concept of leadership be related to patriarchy, racism, and colonialism that have been among the defining