Hi there! It's great to meet you.
We are the Nebraska Leadership Seminar. The ‘Leadership’ in our name is pretty important. Leadership is at the core of what we do. But what does this ‘Leadership’ thing actually mean? The term ‘Leadership’ has been thrown around a lot. I’m sure you’ve heard it defined many times and used in a lot of different ways. Think about it: Student Council members talk about leadership, Football Captains talk about leadership, Navy Seals talk about leadership, even Captain America talks about leadership; lots of people talk about leadership!
This can make things around leadership a little convoluted and cloudy, so at NLS we’ve tried to simplify things. When we talk about Leadership, we want you to be your authentic self.
Leading with your authentic self is to lead with what makes you great. It’s not about fitting a mold, following some directions from a book, or copying someone else. This type of leadership is rooted in your individual strengths, your unique personality, and all the wonderful traits that make you, you. NLS helps you find those strengths and figure out how you can put them to use as one of Nebraska’s young leaders. In a world full of social media lives and airbrushed personalities, leading with your authentic self has a powerful impact on our families, our friendships, and our communities. This is not for the faint of heart, it takes courage and vulnerability to do this, but we believe there is no better way for you to lead.
And what do we do with this authentic leadership? We put it to use building what we call ‘communities of purpose.’ We believe that communities and having a place to belong is really important. I’m sure you can think of a time when you didn’t feel like part of a community. A community where you are known, trusted, and connected to. It’s often that place that empowers you to be your authentic self. We believe that communities can be made from all sorts of people: friends with similar interests, classmates who look out for each other, neighbors who host dinners, citizens who band together, and many more. Communities can be as small as two people or as big as an entire school.
Communities are important. And there are lots of reasons why we believe that communities are important. That reason is a little different for each person involved in NLS. But we all agree on one thing – the world needs community right now. Look around your school, think about the people you know, or just check the nightly news – we are aching for a place to belong. Instagram and iPhones have made us seem more ‘connected’ than ever before – but made us feel less community than ever before. We need leaders to build community.
Not only do we think community is vital, but we take them beyond just a community of belonging – we want to create communities of purpose. A community of purpose is a community that is set on accomplishing something of importance, way beyond what one person could hope to achieve. The ‘something’ can be any mission or worthwhile cause: curbing underage drinking, serving an underprivileged group, raising money, making people smile; anything worth putting a community of people towards.
So NLS’s big vision is for you to become a community builder. What type of community will you build? What purpose will you serve?
So we think that leading with your authentic self is the best way to lead. And the best place to put that leadership to us, is a community of purpose. If you agree with us (or you are willing to at least give it a try) we hope that you’ll join us. We’d love the authentic you as part of our NLS community.