Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Greek EMerging Leaders Program

Reflections from GEM Mentor Rachel Smith, '10

As a member of the Greek EMerging Leaders Program (GEM) since I was a sophomore, I have watched the program grow and change drastically over the past two years. As a mentee two years ago, I attended leadership classes that seemed more like lectures, making the experience somewhat boring and non-interactive. Over the past two years GEM has transformed into a significant, beneficial, and exquisite program for potential emerging Greek leaders, compelling me to remain in the program as a mentor.

The current sessions we have held this fall are completely different than my experience as a mentee. The eight GEM Mentors lead the sessions for the 35 mentees, teaching them about leadership while providing continuous interaction among the members and adding our own experiences that we have had within our chapters and expressing our opinions and views. We offer advice that can help them in the future. I am confident that the mentees look up to us and would feel comfortable calling, emailing, and asking us for help and guidance in the future. The atmosphere of GEM is one that bonds the group together and motivates people to become better leaders.

The Greek EMerging Leaders Program is a great way to expand your horizons and meet new people from all other chapters while also gaining insight and knowledge about leadership. My experience has not only shown me how much the program has grown and expanded, but has also provided me with a new network of friends and a group to look towards for guidance and suggestions. As mentors, we go through a training period in which we learn more about ourselves as leaders and also share our experiences, providing each other with ideas we can take back to our chapters. GEM Mentors has made me a more confident and self-assured leader and I believe that many others have the same experience.

The bond GEM has brings the entire Greek Community together. By sharing insights and providing different ways of leading within chapters, GEM gives Greek life a way to become a unified community. As a Greek Community, we are always looking for ways to work together and build strong relationships which is something that Greek EMerging Leaders Program has done. My experience with GEM has been remarkable and rewarding and I think the program will continue to grow and impact many individuals.