In May 2017, we hosted our second Leadership Retreat for our scholarship recipients. 18 of our Take Charge Scholars from around the country descended on Shane and Heidi’s lake house in Michigan, for a weekend full of personal and professional development opportunities, among a host of other activities.
The Take Charge Team feels strongly about extending their relationships with and investment in their scholars, far beyond the financial support they are awarded as part of the program. The Leadership Retreat was born from a desire to get to know our Scholars better and have them know and learn from one another, all while providing them with additional support and resources to help them achieve their goals.
Workshops presented included Smart Social Media, Grit: Why Passion and Persistence Drive Success, and Constitutional Invasion: An Exercise in the Protection of Rights. We were joined by over 25 business and community leaders who met with the Scholars and engaged in roundtable discussions. In these sessions, our Scholars had a chance to have their stories heard, questions answered, and dreams encouraged, both from the Take Charge team and the outstanding group of supporters who so generously made the trip to the lake to be a meaningful part of what we are building.
On top of the structured sessions, the entire group had time to let loose and just enjoy being together. We had a yoga and meditation instructor help us get our days off to a mindful start. Game night (Celebrity Salad!) and boat cruises on the lake were other highlights. And of course, no experience with the Take Charge team would be complete without some karaoke! Many in the group showed off their vocal talents – or lack thereof? – with a late-night singing session on the Battiers’ much-loved karaoke system.
These outstanding 18 Scholars made the trip to Michigan to be inspired, but they were truly the ones providing inspiration. The conversations had, bonds formed, and laughs shared will not soon be forgotten. Our goal is to host a weekend for the ever-growing contingent of Take Charge Scholars every other summer, to continue to foster their growth and build deep, lasting relationships.
We believe these Leadership Retreats are an invaluable element of the Take Charge Foundation Scholars Program. We are already actively planning our next installment for 2019!