This isn’t my first retreat. Far from it. I can’t even say that it’s the first retreat I’ve gotten to lead, or the first where I was working with such a competent group (because the CSI group is an amazing one, and I’ve loved working with them for the two years that I got to do so!) None of those things are true.

But I can already tell that this is a very special group. Union Productions and Club Downunder are entities that have a reputation that precedes them favorably not just in the music world, but in the world of student activities and student affairs. In two days with this year’s staff, it’s easy to see why.

These students wrongfully get a reputation for programming for themselves, for bringing only indie music, and in neglecting the interests of the campus as a whole. In watching them brainstorm, watching them teach each other, and make plans for the year, I saw a group of 24 (or so) insightful, inclusive, and professional young adults. I am so excited to work with, and learn from, all of them.

They’re funny (with such personal goals as making a 4 lb. grilled cheese, adding 3 inches to a vertical leap, and eating the aforementioned 4 lb. grilled cheese), they’re hardworking, and they take care of each other. I led a session on relational leadership (based on Southwest Airlines, in true Amma Marfo fashion), and I can already see that they’ll take many of those suggestions and the ideas we brainstormed to heart.

This retreat had the desired effect. I’ve learned more about this group, we’ve set goals for success for the semester, and I am so energized to get going with them!

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