Our SHW delegates are off to an amazing start! After registration and saying goodbye to family and friends, delegates headed into their first group meeting where they participated in a variety of name games and icebreaker activities in order to get to know one another. Delegates also got to see their creatively decorated group rooms that correspond to their group’s theme. Sunday evening, delegates participated in “What is Leadership?” which is an introductory activity meant to push delegates to think about the traits of leaders, how leaders have impacted our society, role models who have shaped one’s understanding of leadership, and what they would like to learn from this week. At the end of the evening, delegates participated in an MLW tradition- “Visions”. During Visions, staff members share inspirational quotes, song lyrics, and stories that are significant to them. This activity sets the tone for delegates to be reflective about their vision for their experience at SHW. Delegates then participated in their first hall meeting where they shared their highs and lows (favorite and least favorite) parts of the day and got ready for bed. 


On Monday, SHW delegates began Round One Workshops with topics including Self-Awareness and Identity, Communication, Problem Solving and Design, and Project Planning and SMART Goals. During Self-Awareness and Identity, delegates spent time identifying their values, analyzing how values factor into different leadership styles, and discovering how strengths and growth points factor into their leadership goals. During Communication, Conflict, and Collaboration, delegates spent time identifying the origins of conflicts, discovering their communication preferences, analyzing how individual identities and communication preferences can lead to conflict in a group, and practicing strategies to address conflict and improve collaboration. During Problem Solving and Design delegates explored divergent and convergent thinking, differentiated between the stages of design thinking, explored applications of design thinking, and evaluated the role of self-awareness in making equity-centered decisions. Lastly, in Project Planning and SMART Goals, delegates learned various brainstorming techniques, identified ways to formulate and implement SMART goals, examined the stages of project planning, and practiced applying their new skills to a real project. 

Following morning workshops, delegates participated in their first REALITY session. Delegates will work in their teams on a week-long REALITY project designed to help them practice their new leadership skills. Each REALITY project is centered on a real-world issue. Delegates then participated in Mindfulness Time where they learned about mindfulness, signs of burnout, and self-care strategies. Delegates also participated in group meetings where they completed more team building activities and had their first Tuning session. Tuning is a time where delegates meet in small groups with a staff member to set goals, debrief what they are learning throughout the week, and get to know each other in a small group setting. Delegates closed out the night with Monday Night Activity (affectionately known as MoNA) where they rotated through several indoor and outdoor stations with games including a blindfolded puzzle and unscrambling riddles! 


On Tuesday, delegates finished Round One workshops and began applying all of their new skills to their REALITY projects. Delegates participated in their second day of Mindfulness Time where they practiced intention setting, 5-minute meditation, and other mindfulness strategies. Delegates finished the night with a Tuning session where they solidified their goals for the week, and then Tournament Tuesday where they participated in several activities and games in a competitive but fun manner.