Eight groups of Undergraduate, Faculty, and Staff gathered over lunch in the Magnolia Room on Saturday, September 15, 2018, to discuss Leadership & Character for the President’s Leadership Council.

Overview and highlights:

  • We were all enriched by the particular stories of character shown and the people who displayed it. We were very encouraged by the notion of everyday character, noting that it is all around us if you look for it.
  • Through stories and comments, our group demonstrated that character could be embodied through standing up for what is needed for the greater good. Though we have seen examples of this done in a harsh tone in our lives, we noted the bosses and people in our lives that did it with elegance, diplomatically navigating negotiations with candor to accomplish the goal.
  • We discussed the question, “Can character be taught?” Some traits were thought to be harder to learn than others, but we agreed that it is best learned when leadership and character are modeled or inspired.
  • Another memorable moment of the conversation was when we began to tally what was needed to impart character on campus. People shared that accountability was essential, whether in individual actions or applying a recourse of action to correct a diverted path.