University News

Students Use JanTerm to Hone Leadership Skills

Posted: February 19, 2020

As an HIU undergrad, every student is required to take “Leadership Skills.” The course supports the mission of the University by providing students with knowledge of leadership theories and opportunities to develop leadership skills within group contexts, both in the church and in society. While this is a required course, Hope students relish the opportunity to experience and practice leadership in their community.   

For this course, students engage in 3 hours of community service, either at HIU or with a local organization. This may include service to individuals, churches, non-profits, for-profits, education, and/or government agencies.

During the recent 2020 JanTerm, 5 different groups of students engaged in community service around Orange County. The groups volunteered at: The Cause Church, Grandma’s House of Hope, UCI Medical, and youth volleyball programs. 

Tabitha Abbey, a sophomore majoring in Psychology, volunteered at Grandma’s House of Hope. This organization consists of a wide variety of programs and services to under-served and underprivileged women and children in Orange County and its surrounding areas. Her team assignement required an organization and procedural process to ensure all of the food was sorted properly and in the amount of time allotted.

“Our leadership group helped to package donations of food so it can be distributed to the housing units,” Tabitha reported. “I noticed that I am more of a leader in task-oriented situations. My personal leadership goals are to continue being a leader when and where it is needed especially in high task roles similar to this experience at Grandma’s House of Hope.”

“Leadership Skills is one of my favorite courses to teach at HIU for a number of reasons,” states Dr. Lydia Knopf, Associate Professor of Business & Management and Chair of the undergraduate College of Business and Management. “The community service projects offer our students across all fields of study opportunities to enjoy meaningful and fun experiential learning together. The invaluable and practical experience provides immediate application of individual leadership assessment results, leadership theories, and leadership skills, and is the epitome of preparing our students to become exceptional servant leaders.”