Cape Henlopen sophomore Samantha Franklin learned about leadership skills at a Jefferson Awards conference, and came home to Cape with dozens of ideas on how get more students involved.
“It was so much fun,” she said. “They showed a lot of different ways to involve students in school activities.”
Samantha is a student leader in Cape High's Students in Action group – an offshoot of the Jefferson Awards program that challenges students to develop leadership, communication and problem-solving skills while building cross-cultural bonds and preparing them to contribute in their communities, said Michele Fidance, spokeswoman for the Delaware Jefferson Awards conference.
During the conference, Fidance said students participated in workshops aimed to help sharpen leadership skills and develop a culture of volunteer service in their high schools.
At Cape, Students in Action have for several years organized an annual blood drive, advisor Dennis Arden said. Samantha helped organize a recent canned food drive.
“The leadership conference helps show students how to run a project from A to Z,” Arden said.
As an added bonus, Arden said, Cape's Students in Action chapter has awards it can hand out for hard work. “If someone did a really good job raising money, they could get an award for that,” he said.
At the leadership conference, Samantha said she attended helpful workshops that explained how to develop programs with limited resources. She also was able to network with other students and get ideas for events that could work at Cape.
“One school did a clothes drive, and turned it into a fashion show to get more students involved,” she said.
Samantha said the cameraderie at the leadership conference was the best part.
“You meet a lot of people, and there was a lot of sharing of ideas,” she said.