Amherst LEADS Concludes 2012-2013 Programming

AMHERST, Mass. – Amherst LEADS recently concluded programming for the 2012-2013 academic year, hosting one event on April 23rd for the FYI Program and two events on April 28th for the Futures and Captains Programs.

On Tuesday, April 23rd, Amherst LEADS hosted its final FYI Program of the year. The event, entitled “Rising Futures”, introduced the Amherst College first-year student-athletes to the Amherst LEADS Futures Program and explained the application process, curriculum, and expectations associated with being a part of the Futures Program. The FYIs were also joined by a panel consisting of four current members of the Amherst LEADS Futures Program: Sarah Canning ’14 (Field Hockey), Gabriel Wirz ’15 (Men’s Soccer), Courtney Baranek ’14 (Women’s Ice Hockey), and Chris Tamasi ’15 (Football), each of whom spoke to their experiences in the Futures Program and how it had led to their personal development as leaders. Following the panel, Andrea Hudy joined the Amherst student-athletes as a keynote speaker. Hudy, who is the Assistant Athletic Director for Sport Performance at Kansas and the primary strength and conditioning coach for their men’s basketball program, shared with the first-years her personal leadership experiences and perspective that a career in strength and conditioning had afforded her.     

During the afternoon on Saturday, April 28th, Amherst LEADS concluded its Futures Programming for the academic year, hosting an event that was designed to make the sophomore and junior student-athletes aware of various leadership styles and their characteristics. After a brief presentation that highlighted these leadership styles, the Futures were broken down into small groups and asked to create mock social media profiles that illustrated and highlighted traits associated with the provided styles. At the conclusion of this exercise, the Futures Program was joined by 3-time Olympian Steve Mesler. Mesler, who captured a gold medal for the United States in the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, shared with the Amherst student-athletes both his Olympic experience and research-based advice on how to achieve high-level goals.   

Later that evening, Amherst LEADS held its annual Alumni Sendoff for members of the Captains Program, welcoming back three notable and accomplished Amherst College Alumni to speak to the current Captains. After a brief video where Captains offered their thoughts on the Captains Program, Walter Donovan ’85 (Chief Investment Officer of Putnam Investments in Boston), Dr. Nicole Danforth ’88 (Sports Psychiatrist at Massachusetts General Hospital), and Frits Van Paasschen ’83 (Chief Executive Officer and President of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.) spoke about their experiences as Amherst student-athletes, leadership experiences in their current careers, and successfully navigating the workplace as a recent graduate.

Amherst LEADS will begin its programming for the 2013-2014 academic year when it hosts the Captains Symposium on August 24th-26th, 2013.