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Student Leaders: After the Student Council Conference

Attending a state student council conference is a mind-blowing experience for student council delegates in any school. Recently, I was one of the keynote speakers for the Missouri State Student Council conference at Lindbergh High School in St. Louis. Missouri has always been well known for how professional their conferences are. They don’t go without. Ms. Terri Johnson, the Executive Director and her team of state officers and advisors certainly did another great job this year. Lindbergh High School did an amazing job hosting the conference as well.

All the excitement, energy, and ideas from such a conference can be overwhelming. What do you do now that the three day event is over? By all means, sleep and rest – but it’s also time to reflect on what just happened.

As I sat on the plane this afternoon on my way to Newark, New Jersey I thought of a couple of ideas I wanted to share with the student leaders. I want this experience to be one of the best experiences of your high school careers. So few are able to have this life-changing weekend, so I wanted to make sure you don’t let it go to waste.

First thing, take all the information you gained and write it all down. Go through all your notes and packets. Take everything in your head and dump it into a new leadership book that is yours forever. Write it all down so you don’t forget anything, and make sure this book is easily accessible.

Then, plan the next student council meeting at your school. Talk to your advisor and get a meeting to debrief and share everything you learned with all of your fellow student leaders.

Now that you have the meeting planned and you’ve dumped everything into your new leadership book, go buy yourself a poster board and create a vision board containing everything from the conference. This is much more effective and memorable than simply uploading photos to Snapchat and Instagram. Make a poster and put it up in your room. Let this be your daily inspiration. This is the new you. The leader in you is about to come out.

Attend the meeting with your fellow student leaders and debrief. Talk about the ideas you learned and come up with a plan for your student council. What can you do at school that will make an impact? Come up with one or two things. Don’t get overwhelmed. Keep it simple.

Also, remember that you are worthy of these great opportunities and believe in yourself that more are to come.

Watch the video that I shared with Missouri State Student Council student leaders. Now that the conference is over, don’t let what you learned end.  This is the new normal for you. Go out and do epic things in your life with your student leadership peers.

Be Influential. Change the World.

Jeff Yalden is a leadership speaker and teen mental health expert who works with student leadership organizations and school communities all over the country. Please visit his website at www.TheJYF.org for more information.