On Saturday, January 11, hundreds of students (including some of our youth leaders), gathered at the Student Leadership Conference, UBC's largest. student-run conference. The conference empowers delegates to take ownership of their experience at UBC and realize the future that is theirs to create. Our new UTown@UBC Youth Leadership Coordinator Andrew Clements attended SLC this year; check out his post below for his thoughts on how to "find your true voice," shared by keynote speakers.
I was fortunate to attend the 2014 UBC Student Leadership Conference last Saturday. The event was a grand spectacle of students and teachers conversing around the topic of leadership. Many students packed the lecture halls and classrooms around campus, dressed in business casual attire looking for answers to questions like "where do I go from here? "what is life after graduation all about?"
Well, for those of us on the other side of student life, we all had to pass through the ‘real world gate’ to find that the answers are not so readily available, and at times are daunting and all together illusive. This was the message put forth by Dr. Kurt Grimm and Cole Nakatani in their lecture on the “Student Life Paradox”. Ultimately, they outlined the importance of finding your ‘Vocare’ or Vocation; your true calling or your inner voice. They postured around the inability of post secondary education and degrees as a marker of happiness; that success was something you had to define in your own words and that it’s your responsibility to create what it is you truly want to see happen in your experience. What is your true calling? Take time every week and plan a day around exploring your Vocare. Your job (for money) is an important part of being a successful steward of your life, but don’t let it determine who you really are, and avoid rigidity. As Dr. Grimm quoted “Illiteracy in the 21st century will not be those that cannot read and write. Rather it will be those that not cannot learn, unlearn, and re-learn.” I liked that!
Their message was simple and easy to relate to: “find your true voice,” which co-incidentally happens to be a mantra and theme of the 2014 Utown@UBC Youth Leadership Program. I’m excited to meet the participants of our own program beginning this Friday January 17th and embark upon an environment built upon vocation!