The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

Reflections from Rockefeller Leadership Fellow Lizzy Blackburn '15

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This ongoing series explores the Rockefeller Leadership Fellows (RLF) program through reflections from the fellows. RLF provides fellows with resources in leadership theories and practical skills.

The Rockefeller Leadership Fellows program has genuinely enhanced my senior year in the following ways. It introduced me to new, impressive friends, it made me think critically about leadership and reflect on my experiences, and it exposed me to engaging, successful leaders who offer advice about leadership, relationships, and life.

Rockefeller Leadership Fellow Lizzy Blackburn '15 was inspired by both the participants and the speakers of RLF. Photo by Malika Khurana '15.

Regarding friendship within the program, I started RLF knowing maybe 25 to 33 percent of the fellows, but none of them I knew well. Between chat before the sessions over dinner and Rockefeller Leadership Fellow Patrick's wonderful RLF dates, it has been a highlight of senior year to connect with new, incredible 15s. Each fellow offers unique skills and advice, and each has a really interesting story and grand aspirations for life. I admire the other fellows and am so lucky to sit in a room with them once a week.

Critical thinking and reflection is something Dartmouth students rarely have time for on campus. RLF is two hours of my week when I can put classes and activities on pause to think about my morals, my actions, and how I am doing as a leader. I have used RLF to deal with difficult situations in my organizations this year as well as leadership transitions in these organizations.

Finally, I have loved the speakers. In particular, Nate Fick, Bonnie Hammer, and President Hanlon stood out as highlights of the year. These leaders span many different industries and experiences. Each session is different. I also really liked hearing from the Dartmouth Athletic Director, as I relate well to sports and agree that they are a key vehicle in developing leaders. RLF has been very positive piece of my senior year, I have grown a lot because of the program.

-Written by Rockefeller Leadership Fellow Lizzy Blackburn '15

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