Parent's Forum C2C group photo from March 7, 2019

A group of Wake Forest staff, parents and students gathered over dinner in Winston-Salem, NC on March 7, 2019 to discuss Leadership & Character.

Overview and highlights of our Call to Conversation:

  • One theme throughout the conversation was self-sacrifice: putting others’ needs before your own; doing the right thing (even when it was hard or when you could have made more money); taking the high road/refusing to throw someone else under the bus; and even doing jobs that are not ‘your responsibility,’ but it felt like the right thing to do.
  • Character was also shown through acts of love: accepting others for who they are (no matter what); always fighting for the wellbeing of your family; being attentive to those on the margins and inviting them into the circle; never making anyone feel like a burden; checking in on people to mentor them and give them your time; and encouraging friends and loved ones that anything is possible.
  • Some people talked about character in terms of the desire to make a difference in someone’s life. Sometimes this was in a quiet, hidden way, with no fanfare or expectation of receiving recognition. We emphasized that very often the little acts of character are what count the most.
  • We pondered questions such as: As the acorn has everything inside it that is needed for it to grow into an oak tree, do we have everything inside us to form our character from birth? Or does the environment we are in matter? Our thoughts varied on this. Adversity can bring out one’s character; people can grow into a better (or worse) version of themselves. Just as the acorn needs good soil, enough water, and enough sun, do we also need the right context and environment to grow character?