For Pittsburg State University NSLS Chapter President Kenna Mount, the challenge was clear: motivate her chapter to dominate a campus-wide competition to see which organization could collect the most toilet paper rolls.
The competition has been repeated every year with wide participation from campus groups, clubs, and organizations, and it’s for a great cause.
“To benefit our community’s Safehouse Crisis Center, an emergency shelter for victims of sexual violence and domestic abuse, our NSLS chapter donated over 100 rolls of toilet paper. That much toilet paper typically lasts a week at the safehouse. For our chapter, it was an awesome way for students to see who we are and what we stand for on campus.”
Winning this PSU campus competition meant inspiring her chapter members to join together in service-oriented group action. It also meant generating positive recognition and publicity for the chapter.
Motivation Requires Communication and Delegation
Getting her team to commit and make a positive impact required a range of leadership skills. In particular, Kenna and her fellow chapter leaders needed to keep members up to date with plans and next steps, while keeping a sharp focus on the goal.
“The leadership skills necessary to achieve this goal were communication, strong ethics and standards, organization, and team building.”
Kenna also believes that the experience helped her to develop those skills as well as one other crucial time-management skill.
“Our chapter advisor, Dr. Roberts, demonstrated how to effectively delegate tasks within our E-Board. Seeing her leadership and passion in everything she does will have an everlasting impact on me. Learning from her, I’ve recognized the importance of communication and how it leads to efficiency and success.”
Fueling Future Success by Helping Others
Many chapters discover that one success often fuels the next. The energy, confidence, and sense of fulfillment that comes from meeting a service challenge is particularly energizing. The PSU chapter plans to build on their past successes instead of resting on their laurels.
“Our next goal as a chapter is to complete all the pillars. We meet often with our chapter advisor and hold strategic meetings with the E-Board to keep everyone on the same page. We hope to get a 40 percent induction rate for both terms this year to keep creating and developing leaders.”
For other NSLS chapter leaders and E-Board members seeking ways they can make a positive impact, Kenna says to let your passion drive your chapter’s success.
“Find a project that you’re passionate about so your passion can be spread to all members. Make it something fun for people to participate in, and express a lot of encouragement and gratitude.”
Challenges Help Build Future Leaders
Many Chapter Presidents find that their time in a leadership role leads to skill growth and an enriched college experience. For Kenna, the experience of leading her chapter in this fun campus contest, as well as throughout the year, has been profound.
“Getting the opportunity to be Chapter President for PSU has impacted me tremendously. I’ve learned that leading people often involves making decisions and judgments about certain situations, which is an important skill. I’ve learned to have confidence in not only myself, but also in my team and in NSLS members.”
The experience has also helped refine her perception of leadership. While some may view leadership as an elite position of privilege, Kenna joins other chapter leaders in adopting a more service-oriented philosophy.
“Leadership means having the patience and hope to lift up others around you. Great leaders support others and make them more productive and effective. Leadership also means to have the capability to put people in the right place at the right time. When you help someone find their place and you let them stay there, they’ll excel. Lastly, leadership means you trust and respect those that you work with. If you lack the ability to trust, there’s no way your team can be productive.”
Hear Kenna’s Leadership Story
Many NSLS chapters in the US and elsewhere have demonstrated a strong commitment to community service. Read about how our chapter in the Bahamas made a huge difference in their community.