The University of Nebraska–Lincoln College of Business Administration selected four students to strengthen their leadership skills at the U.S. Naval Academy Leadership Conference January 22-25 in Annapolis, Maryland. With the theme ‘Forging Team Spirit: Sharing the Vision,’ the conference brought together the best minds in the practice and study of leadership, where military and civilian students exchanged ideas and experiences.
“This theme is important in leadership because a lot of leaders are just looking at the end result and not the process,” said Ryan Evers, a senior management major from Papillion, Nebraska. “I learned at the end of the day, taking care of your team and putting trust in them to succeed is most important.”
With a schedule filled with breakout sessions and speakers, students networked with peers across the nation. Merging military and civilians, students gained multiple leadership perspectives.
“The networking experience at the conference was unlike anything I’ve been a part of in college,” said Camille Sippel, a junior economics major with minors in political science and conflict resolution from Groton, South Dakota. “I talked to people with years of experience in service, international service members and college students with vast achievements on their own campuses. We created an atmosphere where diverse ideas were shared.”
Jennifer Mostek, assistant director of international engagement and advising, traveled with the students to the conference for the first time and emphasized the hands-on leadership opportunities provided.
“The conference leaders acknowledge reading about leadership and learning about it in the classroom is very different than practicing it effectively, especially in high stress situations,” Mostek said. “One of the speakers called the conference a ‘clinic’ on leadership and that it’s up to the participants to continue learning and practicing.”
Sippel, who is involved in the CBA Student Advisory Board, CBA Honors Academy and ASUN Student Government as a senator and member of the Committee for Diversity and Inclusion, plans to use the leadership strategies from the conference to improve her organizations. She also participates in Gamma Phi Beta sorority and Order of Omega.
“I believe the best way to apply the experience to my personal leadership is to share the takeaways from the conference with other students and apply what I learned in a sustainable way,” Sippel said. “Setting goals of improvement in my leadership strategy and working to attain them on a regular basis will keep me accountable.”
Brianna Ridenour, a junior management major with a psychology minor from Alliance, Nebraska and Alan Davis, a senior double major in finance and agribusiness with minors in economics and accounting from Elkhorn, Nebraska also represented CBA at the leadership conference.