Diversity and Inclusion: LDP Expansion by Dr. Harvey Henson

I have grown so very fond of the LDP, the untiring Dr. DeRuntz, the amazing student leaders, and everything that the LDP represents and accomplishes. I have certainly enjoyed the hard work and truly gained from the dedication exhibited by everyone – members, sponsors, and mentors, especially my colleague Dr. DeRuntz. I have also grown as a leader through our combined teamwork and I have learned from the examples of leadership that occur nearly every day among our members.

Striving for My Future – by Venkat Ramana Reddy

My name is Venkat Ramana Reddy Vootukuri and I am a graduate student pursuing my my masters degree in the civil engineering. My path to the USA from India was full of difficult hurdles to over-come. Some of the hurdles are being away from home, passing my exams, obtaining my visa, and my academic scholarship. After finishing my bachelors degree, my dream of pursuing my graduate degree in the United States was within reach.

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Gaining the World – by Jingsong “John” Dong

 Studying abroad is a big challenge for every international student. Still, millions of international students study in foreign countries for various reasons. Every student has his or her reasons to learn abroad. My reason for leaving China and coming to the U.S. is to shape my mind so that it can listen to different voices and think deeply. I hope to open the gate of the world by learning here in the United States.

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How I Got Here – by Faisal Alsuwailem

I graduated with an Associates Degree in Mechanical Engineering Maintenance Technology in 2014.  After my Associates, I worked for SABIC, a chemical manufacturing company in Saudi Arabia, for seven months as a mechanical technician. I eventually resigned to continue my higher education in the United States. I came in the spring of 2015 and I studied English for two months to pass my TOEFL exam before enrolling in the College of Engineering.

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Coming into SIUC with a Team – By Madeleine Meyer

            The Leadership Development Program’s sense of teamwork is beyond anything I could have imagined. Each member and mentor works to achieve LDP‘s visions big or small, but all equally in excellence. Through all of the activities so far this year, the team has worked together to achieve the task at hand whether it was personal or team oriented.

RSO Fair Table run by Diogo Seixas, Jim Gross, Madeleine Meyer, Scott Costello from left to right

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Teamwork – By Nathaniel Lightle

          One of the biggest lessons people take away from the LDP is the importance of teamwork.  A lot of us have been on teams for a long time, whether from sports, volunteering, or other organizations.  However, none of these instances teaches teamwork in the aspect that the LDP does, as it will be in the real world.  In the LDP it is up to us to utilize our team; Dr. DeRuntz has told us countless times not be afraid to ask each other for help and look out for one another.

Spring Big Event Service Project

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RSO Fair – by Diogo Seixas

         In the past week, the members from the Leadership Development Program were present in the Registered Student Organization (RSO) fairs from different colleges in the university. It was a fantastic opportunity to show the students and staff what the program has been doing for the last year, practicing leadership skills, as well as being a great chance to recruit new members.

Diogo at the CASA RSO Fair

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Spring Orientation – By Lincoln Kinley

         Spring Orientation is, without a doubt, one of the most critical points for LDP throughout the whole year. It’s when we take all of our applicants to Touch of Nature for a weekend so we can give them crash course of the LDP. For many of these applicants, it is their first time interacting with LDP, so it is very important to establish standards, without overworking the new members.

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Pi Challenge – By Olivia Taitt

           In high school, I was one of those students who prided themselves on knowing the most digits of the geometric coefficient known as pi. I was always ready for a competition. If there was an extra credit or any other incentive to learn more digits, I was there ready to recite. Last year, I did LDP’s Pi Challenge and recited 125 digits, good enough for second place behind Connor’s 185. Thanks to that excitement, I took charge of the event this year.

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Leadership Experience Day: An Event to Develop Leaders in Brazil

         Two years ago there was a large influx of Brazilian college students who came to the US to study for just one year. SIU’s College of Engineering received a proportionate number of these students and a handful of them found their way into the LDP. Little did I know then that two years later these students would be on a personal journey to transform their country.

L-R: Felipe Rodrigues, Bruce DeRuntz, Jean Carvahlo, and Diogo Seixas

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