|Me trying to speak in public :)|
Students from all parts the US get together to learn and discuss the tips and tricks necessary to a successful leader, coupled with fun activities (dance party for example). It is a great occasion to meet people from all around the world studying or living in the United States, hear their stories and learn about their culture. I can not possibly layout all the lessons that could be gained throughout the conference (go next year if you can, and experience for yourself!!), but I will discuss a couple points I personally gathered.
First, a general overview of the theme: "Courage to Engage". A leader is someone that people follow and trust to develop/achieve a project, a passion or something they believe in. So each of us is a full blown tank of leadership potential waiting to burst. This does not mean that everybody has be the president of a group or war leader or anything like that (though these are included), it all starts with the little things such as having the courage to engage into a difficult conversation or with a stranger or simply getting out of your comfort zone to have a connection with your alter ego.
One example can be derived from the inspiring documentary movie "Crossing Borders" by Arnd Wachter, which follows 8 students (4 Americans and 4 Moroccans) living together in Morocco for a week (see trailer below). The movie was shown at the conference, followed by a very interesting group discussion on the topics developed in the movie (the previous picture was taken at that moment), moderated by the author himself Arnd who gracefully accepted to participate at the event.
CROSSING BORDERS (Trailer, 3 mins) from CROSSING BORDERS on Vimeo.
"There is enough religion in this world to hate each other, but not enough religion to love one another" - King Abdullah II of Jordan