Spelman College has a longstanding tradition of educating and training Black woman leaders. Each program or service in the Division of Student Affairs offers numerous opportunities for students to engage in a leadership role. Other divisions of Spelman offer leadership opportunities too, such as the esteemed position of Student Trustee, a member of the Spelman College Board of Trustees. Spelman does, however, require students to meet certain standards to qualify for a leadership role.
Students who participate in the Bonner Scholars Program, can lead by serving on program committees such as Recruitment, Activities, and Communications. Student leadership is further developed through the program's executive committee, which consists of class representatives who are responsible for planning and coordinating training for Bonner Scholars.
Career Planning and Development
Through the Office of Career Planning and Development, students serve in leadership capacities as Career Planning Ambassadors, who serve as liaisons between the Office of Career Planning and corporate recruiters.
By serving others, Spelman women develop and strengthen their leadership skills. The Office of Community Service (OCS) encourages student-directed programs, which allow them to uncover and hone their leadership abilities. Some students hold leadership positions in OCS programs such as the UPS Scholars Program whereas others create special activities that include dance, drama, math, science, and the visual arts for elementary, middle, and high school students. Students also have developed and presented workshops at the local and national levels, including workshops conducted at the Atlanta-based King Summit and the National Campus Outreach Opportunity League.
The Counseling Services Department sponsors the oldest peer educator group on campus, the Peepers (Peer Educator Program). These students, selected annually by their peers to provide leadership in the area of mental and emotional wellness, are trained to address issues of eating disorder prevention, self-esteem and person rights, healthy relationships, intimate violence prevention, diversity, and racism. Many peer educators plan to pursue careers in the helping professions. Former PEEPERS have become social workers, public health specialists, counselors, dentists, and medical doctors.
The Office of Disability Services encourages and promotes leadership opportunities for Spelman students with disabilities. Students plan and implement self-advocacy activities such as Disability Awareness Week, an annual event that allows students with disabilities to educate the Spelman community about disability-related issues via workshops, information fairs, and awareness games.
Health Services promotes student leadership through student health organizations and initiatives such as the Student Health Associates and Peer Educators (SHAPE) and the Student Health Advisory Council (SHAC). SHAPE provides peer education to students in the areas of HIV/AIDS, STD's, women's health and breast cancer, teen pregnancy prevention, fitness, and nutrition. SHAC's mission is to help Spelman women help themselves by serving as a liaison between the entire student body and the Health Services Department and by communicating health problems and concerns. SHAC assists in educating the student body on the availability of health services and the process of accessing those services. It informs and educates the student body about student health insurance. SHAC also oversees all student-led health forums and activities and ensures that the information is accurate and current.
The Department of Public Safety offers Protecting Our Spelman Sisters Everyday (POSSE). As members of POSSE, students promote departmental community-service programs and projects, monitor community perception of departmental services and programs, and stimulate dialogue on issues related to community safety and security. Participants work closely with Public Safety officers who advise the group and help develop their leadership and community relations skills.
Living on campus offers a number of opportunities for student involvement; including leadership opportunities. There are two invaluable leadership opportunities through the residence halls that you should consider.
One leadership opportunity is the role of Resident Assistants (RAs). RAs work with the Resident Director to help manage residence halls. They are considered the lifeline of the department because of their close, daily interaction with students. RAs gain valuable skills while helping build a strong residential community.
Residence hall government affords students another leadership option. Students elect a president, vice president, secretary and treasurer, and floor representatives for each House Council, which governs each residence hall. These student leaders plan activities and social events. House Councils sometimes coordinate activities with the Student Government Association and the Office of Student Activities.
Student leadership, an important component of Spelman's mission, makes it imperative that Spelman women be agents of change in their clubs and organizations and in their communities. To help accomplish this end, the Office of Student Activities conducts Club and Organization Training Seminars for presidents, advisors, and treasurers. Additionally, the Student Government Association sponsors and facilitates a Student Leadership Conference for members of chartered campus clubs and organizations. Throughout the year, students are encouraged to attend local and national conferences to network with other campus leaders and examine other campus leadership models.
Board Of Trustees
Every three years, a second-semester first- year student is elected by her peers and selected by the Board of Trustees, Committee on Board Affairs, to serve a three-year term on the Board of Trustees of Spelman College. The Board of Trustees, an impressive group of individuals from all over the country, provides direction regarding the administration of the College. Serving as a student trustee is an honor that carries with it all of the duties and responsibilities of a college trustee, as well as the additional demand of maintaining the highest standards of conduct and scholarship. More on student trustees (links to /current/life/leadership/trustee.html)
Women of Excellence Leadership (WEL) Lecture Series
The Women of Excellence Leadership Lecture Series, in keeping with Spelman College's mission, seeks to cultivate agents of change for a civil and just society. The program involves a series of seminars, which aim to inculcate values and life skills such as leadership, time management, teamwork, problem solving, public speaking and communication, ethics, integrity, and diversity. It features nationally recognized experts, noted faculty and staff, and prominent corporate partners. WEL was created specifically for Spelman students who strongly desire to empower themselves through leadership training.