Playing to your strengths

A few weekends ago, Trinity College welcomed 37 Indigenous students from around Australia to participate in a leadership program, Playing to Your Strengths.

All participants were recipients of Yalari scholarships, which offer Indigenous students from regional, rural and remote communities throughout Australia to experience a first-class secondary education, a value which Trinity also shares – providing access to education to students regardless of their financial means.

Playing to Your Strengths was developed as a result of the close partnership formed between Yalari and Trinity – Yalari has been sending its students to Trinity's Young Leaders programs since 2011, to encourage students to consider their pathways to higher education opportunities.

The recent program was unique in that it was situated at Trinity but delivered by Trinity staff, as well as Yalari's partner schools' staff, such as Geelong Grammar and St Catherine's.

It was hoped that students would develop increased confidence, an awareness of their own individual strengths, leadership skills and be inspired and motivated by other Yalari students.

Dean of the College, Mr Campbell Bairstow, welcomed the students and then the program began with a personal values workshop, which was delivered by Trinity College Foundation Studies Drama Lecturer, Dr Rosemary Blight.

This helped the students identify their strengths and foster their own unique qualities. The evening activities included a hip hop workshop, which was definitely one of the highlights for the students.

The leadership workshop, which was delivered by Indigenous educator and Yalari Founding Director, Waverley Stanley, challenged the cohort to work together and raise $20,000 in order to fund another young Indigenous student to attend a Yalari partner boarding school for one year.

The students readily took up the challenge and developed strategies for how this would be achieved. The program concluded on Sunday, with students leaving with increased confidence and a strong peer network.

Manager of the Yalari Indigenous Youth Leadership Program, Ms Susie Hunter, reported that the students she visited at Geelong Grammar following the program were still buzzing.

'They have already started on their leadership project – off and running!' Susie said. 'The motivation is inspiring to observe and is certainly due to the enriching weekend they have all just spent together.'

See the fun the students experienced at Playing to Your Strengths

07 Mar 2013
Category: Learning