I’ve been thinking about dreams a lot recently. Since I’ve been here I’ve had some of the most interesting experiences in my sleep. And it’s made me think about how important and how influential the people and the environment around us are, without even noticing it. A single object, a single word, or a even a single smell can trigger off a whole series of pictures which have been carefully tucked away a few nights before where you can’t quite reach for it yourself. But it made me think – what if that person had never said that word? What if I hadn’t walked into the room at that particular time to see that particular sight? I may never have remembered that dream. Ever. And perhaps because I have been spending the past six days with such a mixture of people in a new place, there are more opportunities for the trigger to be set off, and perhaps that’s why I’m remembering more of the obscure scenarios my subconscious mind is conjuring up.
In a more general aspect, this idea of change and new experiences triggering off thoughts and emotions can be linked to the process of ideas. Opening your mind to change and talking to new people, or just being in a different environment, fabricates a whole new level of existence which stimulates the brain, leading to thoughts and ideas you may never have thought about otherwise. In terms of leadership I think it’s all about catching these new thoughts and developing them into something meaningful.
People say Leaders are born not made but I disagree. Leadership can and should be taught. Teaching intelligent young people in a multi cultural environment is sowing seeds on fertile ground and not just seeds of a single crop. Seeds that will bloom and flourish in many ways. It will empower the students of the ASfYL to get involved in making a difference and it does not matter how small the cause or idea. A team initially just needs two people and from that it will grow to fit the size of the issue. Anyone who attends our course will want to create a team – perhaps to save the world but more likely to help or entertain people and make lives more fulfilling. Changing the world can come later when our young leaders get together in the future after a few years of preparing their skills.
UWC Atlantic College is both delighted and excited to be welcoming this pioneering inaugural year of The Atlantic School for Young Leaders course here to our campus this summer. We see ASFYL as being a complementary summer short course which is very much in line with our own Mission and Vision for education, in the broadest sense of that term. UWC AC’s mission is to “Make education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future”. These core values are very impressively embedded in the ‘DNA’ and essence of the ASFYL attitude, methodology, pedagogy and genuine belief in how imaginative educational approaches can lead towards a better future for all of us. In this way, we see ASFYL as part of our wider UWC Atlantic College 360 degree strategic vision, which recognises that true education doesn’t only happen in traditional classrooms nor only during the regular academic school year. Along with Atlantic College’s Principal, John Walmsley, and myself, all of us here at AC are looking forward to seeing which interesting paths ASFYL might take, and how we can all learn and develop our own practice, based upon this dynamic approach to experiential learning, personal growth, and vibrant collaboration.
Welcome to the new website for international creative young leadership!
Our blog is a place to find out more about us, what we do and who we meet. We update regularly on different topics, including resources and links to help develop the wider conversation of innovative young leadership.