In its first year the NorthStar Leadership Program at Unity College has been highly successful.  The leadership program begun in January has attracted students across the curriculum, helping them to enhance a personal philosophy of leadership.

On Tuesday, April 24, Unity College will hold a celebration of achievement for program participants.  The event will be held in the Welcome Center at 6 p.m. on the campus of Unity College, 90 Quaker Hill Road, Unity, Maine.

Participants will be recognized for their achievements and given the opportunity to reflect upon the lessons they have learned. Within the context of leadership, the program helped participants to understand self, groups, community, and acceptance of responsibilities inherent in community membership.  It provided multiple pathways for students to demonstrate their commitment to community to leadership.

Leadership Institute founder Mike Weber (photo) delivered a presentation to NorthStar Leadership Program participants in January.

The new program includes foundational programming exploring the broader topics of leadership, while four tracks within the program offer students host of opportunities for hands on engagement.

The four tracks of the program include:

Campus Engagement—Designed for students who want to develop and sharpen their leadership skills through a variety of campus engagement opportunities. This track honors student participation in Student Government, Student Clubs, Residence Life, Athletics, etc. An annual leadership development plan helps each student to reach his or her potential as a leader.

Outdoor Leadership—Designed for students who have a passion to improve their outdoor leadership skills. Training certification in map and compass, Leave No Trace, climbing, canoeing, and kayaking are offered. The program culminates with the Unity College Master Guide certificate.

WeLead—Designed to educate and empower female students to become socially conscious environmental stewards and proactive members of their community. The program offers academic courses, an environmental speaker series, trips, retreats, and other activities that build teamwork and a sense of community. This successful program has been enriching the female spirit at Unity College for a number of years.

Service Leadership—Designed for students who want to make a difference in the local community and beyond. Students gain hands-on experience by working with organizations and groups to tackle various issues. This track helps students to test their skills, expand their knowledge, build a resume, and get their hands dirty. The Office of Community-Based Learning provides assistance to students to help locate partners, groups, and organizations.

Three levels are:

Connect—Observe and experience leadership as demonstrated by others. Engage in campus and community opportunities. Learn about and reflect upon leadership styles and skills.
Commit—Practice and acquire personal leadership skills. Support the outcomes of community opportunities. Continue to strengthen your understanding of leadership style, your personal strengths, and continue to grow.
Challenge—Model effective leadership in sup-port of other students. Initiate campus events. Build a sustainable commitment towards effective citizenship and social responsibility.

Foundational Programming
Each of the tracks shares common programming designed to stimulate, broaden horizons, and test one’s ethical and moral courage. Scheduled throughout the year, these will include various speakers, a retreat, service opportunities, trainings, a national leadership conference, movies, and other means.

In 2011, Unity College was named to the top 30 of the Washington Monthly college rankings, and was one of eighteen U.S. colleges and universities named to The Princeton Review’s 2010 Green Rating Honor Roll.

Unity College is a small private college in rural Maine that provides dedicated, engaged students with a liberal arts education which emphasizes the environment and natural resources. Unity College graduates are prepared to be environmental stewards, effective leaders, and responsible citizens through active learning experiences within a supportive community.

Friday, April 20, 2012