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

Rockefeller Leadership Fellows

Shasti Conrad on Activism and Institutional Change

Shasti Conrad is a dynamic force, working to empower diverse and inclusive voices so that all people can be part of bettering our world. An inspiring speaker and activist in her own right, she also has an impressive background of working with three Nobel Peace Prize winners, President Barack, Malala Yousafzai, and Kailash Satyarthi. She now works as the U.S. campaign manager for the 100 Million Campaign, a youth mobilization effort to end child labor and trafficking.

 

She led the Fellows in a session entitled “Activism and Institutional Change.” She kicked off the session by sharing her philosophy on creating positive change that centers around “people-powered policymaking.” She encouraged the Fellows to emulate leaders engaged in problem-solving from an inclusive lens and to break down barriers so that others can get through them. She challenged the Fellows to not just recreate the same structures of power and inequality but to disrupt them. Shasti told us that Malala taught her, “your life is a gift –an opportunity to change the world for the better each day,” and that sentiment can motivate each of us to do good in the world.

 

Class of 2018 Rockefeller Leadership Fellows

Front Row (left to right): Rajiv Ramaiah, Maria Jose Auil, Charlotte Blatt, Samuel Colello, Abhilasha Gokulan, Alyssa Heinze, Kristen Virkler, Dale Li, Raunak Bhojwani

2nd Row (left to right): Gricelda Ramos, Christopher Huberty, Lucia Pierson, Jonathan Chu, Emma Marsano, Carolyn McShea, Jessica Colin, Arati Gangadharan, Zoe Snow, Kaina Chen

3rd Row (left to right): Matthew Sindelar, Akanksha Wasan, Marley Peters, Julian Marcu, Caroline Berens, Jarrett Taylor 

*Fellows not pictured: Daniel Propp

Rocky and Me: Abhilasha Gokulan ’18 Senior Reflection

In the Rocky & Me series, Seniors reflect on their experiences during their time at Dartmouth.

Rocky and Me: Kaina Chen ’18 Senior Reflection

In the Rocky & Me series, Seniors reflect on their experiences during their time at Dartmouth.

Rockefeller Leadership Fellow: Julian Marcu ’18

This series introduces the 2017-2018 Rockefeller Leadership Fellows. Each fellow reflects on why he or she wanted to be a part of the program and what aspects of leadership most interests them.

In our increasingly globalized world, what it means to be a leader in the 21st century is vastly different than what it meant in previous eras. Originally, the “ideal leader” was one that could efficiently organize and motivate a group around a common goal to achieve a desired objective. However, this conception would imply that the leader and the team exist in a vacuum. Today, as a global community, we realize that the independent actions of individuals, groups, organizations, businesses, and governments can have far reaching effects on people all over the world.

Rockefeller Leadership Fellow: Charlotte Blatt '18

This series introduces the 2017-2018 Rockefeller Leadership Fellows. Each fellow reflects on why he or she wanted to be a part of the program and what aspects of leadership most interests them.

Throughout my Dartmouth career, I have held various positions and participated in several programs that have allowed me to both demonstrate and learn about leadership. In particular, as President of Dartmouth College Democrats during the 2016 general election, I was at the helm of an organization tasked with helping to turn out the Dartmouth campus and wider Hanover community to vote for Hillary Clinton, Maggie Hassan, and Democrats up and down the ballot. After this experience, I wanted to delve deeper into leadership training to improve my skills at facilitation, public speaking, and organizational management.

Rockefeller Leadership Fellow: Chris Huberty '18

This series introduces the 2017-2018 Rockefeller Leadership Fellows. Each fellow reflects on why he or she wanted to be a part of the program and what aspects of leadership most interests them.

I began studying leadership during my first year in high school and have intensively studied it several times since. Despite my relatively lengthy immersion in leadership studies, I find that leadership means something slightly different to me each time I reflect on it. Thus, many of the particular aspects of leadership that interest me have changed, and I suspect this trend will continue as I grow older and further develop my own leadership style. Leadership is a broad topic, yet I have been able to study it from many angles to improve my own leadership style.

Rockefeller Leadership Fellow: Dan Propp '18

This series introduces the 2017-2018 Rockefeller Leadership Fellows. Each fellow reflects on why he or she wanted to be a part of the program and what aspects of leadership most interests them.

As far as aspects of leadership, I am interested in how leaders can help individuals and groups reach their full potential. Additionally, I am interested in the capacity of effective leadership to bring about cultural shifts; a good leader can lead a group successfully to a goal, but a great leader can completely change a dialogue.

For me, being a RLF is largely a chance to meet student leaders who I find inspiring. The group consists of a number of fantastically intelligent and charismatic individuals, and I look forward not only to learning from them, but also growing alongside them.

Rockefeller Leadership Fellow: Jonathan Chu ’18

This series introduces the 2017-2018 Rockefeller Leadership Fellows. Each fellow reflects on why he or she wanted to be a part of the program and what aspects of leadership most interests them.

Two broad aspects of leadership that I am very interested in are strategic decision-making and effective implementation of those decisions.  I believe my interest in these areas comes from my view of the leader in general.  A leader is someone who could be responsible for making decisions when a group of people may not be able to arrive at one.  At the same time, the leader is tasked with finding a way for the group to accomplish some mission that is likely unattainable by a single person.  These substitutions make it critical that the leader is an excellent decision-maker, but good decisions are worthless if they can't be executed effectively.

Rockefeller Leadership Fellow: Sam Colello '18

This series introduces the 2017-2018 Rockefeller Leadership Fellows. Each fellow reflects on why he or she wanted to be a part of the program and what aspects of leadership most interests them.

Communication, compassion, and decision-making skills are three essential aspects of leadership. I believe that communication is the most important element of being a leader because it is the glue that brings everyone together. It ensures that all members of the group are on the same page and it facilitates the collaborative process of completing a task. I admire leaders who are great communicators because it makes the process of achieving a goal smooth and easy to follow. 

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