BY CYRIL BRABANT
Lacombe Composite High School (LCHS) is gearing up as it prepares to host the 2017 Alberta Student Leadership Conference.
LCHS recently announced they won the bid to be able to host the annual Student Leadership Conference held by the Alberta Association of Student’s Councils and Advisors (AASCA) next year.
“It inspires me to become a better leader,” said Regan Benjamin, a member of the Rams Leadership Club. “Planning ASLC and all the events throughout the school year makes me want to be better and work harder.”
“I always joke about this but it’s true, you take kids to this conference and it’s like they find their people,” said Dana Schafer, one of the supervisors of the Rams Leadership Club (RLC) at LCHS. “They (the students) go to these events and find like-minded people and they find out ‘oh! There’s other people in the world like me’.”
In order to be a part of the planning committee for the ASLC, students had to apply and were taken through an interviewing process with the result being the eight students that were chosen.
Amongst those eight students were Benjamin, 16, and Katelyn Litwin, 15.
There are two ways in which students can be a part of the RLC, by either taking the designated class and the other by joining the Club.
In both the class and Club version of RLC, students learn ways to become better leaders and how to apply the skills they learn into real life scenarios.
The RLC plans many of the school’s events such as Grade 10 orientation, the annual open house, spirit week and various other activities.
Keynote speakers and various events are held at the ASLC which are primarily focused on how students can improve their lives professionally, personally and academically.
“The ASLC provides three keynote speakers that have messages of leadership that they can bring back home,” Schafer said. “They also do ‘break out sessions’ which teach students certain skills or gives them an inspirational message.
Though the event is mainly populated by students, teachers attend their own conference seminars and speakers.
Each ASLC has a theme in which the conference is centred around and LCHS chose ‘connected leaders’ as their theme for next year.
“It’s this idea that our minds, bodies and our school spirit are all connected,” Schafer said. “Networking is really important in this generation, so we’ve got a big emphasis on that.”
“One of our goals is to allow students to choose where they want to go and which speakers they want to see,” said Benjamin. “We want them to go where they’re interested in and learn what they want to learn about instead of having to go to a speaker or message that they didn’t really care much about.”
Schafer said they plan on having events about maintaining a healthy lifestyle emotionally, physically and mentally as well as encouraging other schools to bring their best event along in a type of school showcase.
According to Schafer most of the funding for the ASLC comes from student registration fees, which is why billeting is so cost effective for visitors.
LCHS has already began the planning for fundraisers and community events. The school recently held an information presentation geared toward local businesses, looking for sponsors and volunteers that would be willing to help.
“I really enjoy the leadership aspect of it,” Litwin said about her thoughts on what the ASLC meant to her. “It’s something I really look forward to.”