Launching Leadership honored by ND Department of Commerce

MINOT, N.D. – The North Dakota Department of Commerce and North Dakota Gov. Doug Bergum announced Launching Leadership was honored as a recipient of the 2023 Future Leaders Empowerment Award, presented at the 2023 Mainstreet Awards on March 18 at the Governor’s Residence.

Launching Leadership, a leadership institute for high school students in the northcentral region of North Dakota, was offered through a partnership between Strengthen ND, Minot State University’s Looyenga Leadership Center, and the North Dakota Department of Commerce. The first conference was at MSU in October 2022, and the second event was in November 2023.

“This was a very collaborative project that was strengthened by the cooperation of so many great people in the community,” said Jim Sturm, director of the Looyenga Leadership Center. “The end product was a program which, among other things, gave our college students a chance to act as group leaders and mentors for high school students.  It was very uplifting to see the positive impact that this experience had on both groups.”

The program provided education specific to leadership development and introduced participants to local communities, businesses, organizations, and leaders. Attendees learned essential leadership pillars and developed a list of local and regional issues they were concerned about in their own communities.

The Future Leaders Empowerment Award recognizes a community that seeks to engage students in creating a healthy and vibrant community through leadership development, community planning, or workforce exploration in community industries.

“Launching Leadership provided opportunities for North Dakota high school students to learn about the different types of community leadership that exist in both urban and rural communities,” said Beth Odahlen, Strengthen ND director of community engagement and solutions. “Through partnerships with Hilltop Farms, Black Butte Trails, Esther's Acres, and Visit Minot, students had a number of opportunities to connect with community leaders and learn about the amazing opportunities to lead in the communities where they live.

“This program also supported these young leaders, assisting them in the development of their leadership skills and opportunities to utilize these skills in their own communities. Overall, the impact on these students was substantial and I can't wait to see all the amazing ways they impact the communities in which they live.”

The Mainstreet Awards 23 created a highlight video for Launching Leadership, along with the other 2023 winners, that can be accessed HERE.

About Minot State University
Minot State University is a public university dedicated to excellence in education, scholarship, and community engagement achieved through rigorous academic experiences, active learning environments, commitment to public service, and a vibrant campus life.

Published: 03/21/24   

» More MSU News