Despite the current challenging times, it remains a priority for St. Andrew's College to continue to provide students with a wide variety of co-curricular programs. One such program is the McEwen Leadership Program, a specialized business leadership program for Grade 11 and 12 students that focuses on experiential education and leadership skills development.
We are happy to report that almost all of the planned activities in the McEwen Leadership Program will be offered to students this year with some minor changes and pivots. For example, Grade 11 students in the McEwen Leadership Program recently completed a full-day leadership workshop here on campus. Facilitated by ALIVE Outdoors, the workshop was designed with a focus on experiential education and project-based learning.
Students participated in a variety of collaborative challenges, personal reflections, and guest speaker sessions to develop their leadership, communication, and group dynamics skills, all while exploring the answer to the driving question – “As a leader, what is your role in ensuring effective teamwork within your organization?”
Upon returning to the classroom, the students will apply the lessons learned from the workshop to their ongoing projects related to the various elements of group dynamics - teamwork, synergy, norms, cohesiveness, and communication.
Two days later, Grade 12 students in the McEwen Leadership Program participated in a social impact entrepreneurship workshop in preparation for their McEwen Entrepreneurship Fair in December. In small groups, the students have already generated business venture ideas and started preparing a full business plan to pitch to judges at the upcoming Entrepreneurship Fair. The purpose of the social impact entrepreneurship workshop was to introduce the students to the concept of social impact, and challenge the students to incorporate a social impact plan into their current business venture.
The workshop was facilitated by Ellen Martin, Co-Founder and CEO of SoJo, an entrepreneurship consulting company in Toronto dedicated to helping organizations grow their entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship programs. Ellen began the workshop by introducing the students to the overall concept of social impact and profiling case studies of organizations that have initiated positive social change through their business activities (Me to We, Textbooks for Change, etc.). The students were then asked to use a ‘Social Impact Idea Canvas’ to evaluate their own business venture plans and ensure that their business will positively impact the community. After taking the time to work a social impact plan into their business venture, the students presented to the group, answered questions, and received feedback.
Next week, the Grade 12 McEwen Leadership students will participate in a full-day workshop on Executive Presence Training. Dr. Georgette Zinaty will implement the workshop, Executive Vice President President of Corporate Class Inc., North America’s premier provider of guidance and training in the areas of Business Etiquette, International Protocol, Dining and Dress. Students will learn various skills, including business networking, online and virtual communication, business dress, social media profile management, and interview preparation.
The above activities are just a small sample of the variety of events planned for the McEwen Leadership Program during the 2020-21 academic year. The program is modelled after the vision of Mr. Rob McEwen '69, who is widely recognized as one of the most innovative Canadian entrepreneurs. It seems fitting that during these challenging times, the McEwen Leadership Program will continue to innovate to offer students unique educational opportunities at St. Andrew's.
Story by Sean Ludwig, Course Director, McEwen Leadership Program