National Student Leadership begins with campus leaders and ends with a challenge to think more deeply and dream differently. Participants are not asked whether they will change the world, but rather how they will change the world. More important than the compilation of the perfect resume and the attaining of degrees is the character developed in young men and women. At National Student Leadership, we believe that the most influential leaders of tomorrow will build their strength of character as they answer the questions few are brave or cognizant enough to ask. Questions like, “Why am I here? What is my purpose? Who am I? What am I doing with my life that is going to make a difference?”
National Student Leadership invites men and women from a range of religious backgrounds to discuss the model of leadership presented by Jesus of Nazareth. This approach includes an examination of the life and teachings of the most influential and effective leader in Western civilization.
In regard to Jesus’ impact as a leader, consider the following:
2000 years after he walked the dusty roads of Galilee, several billion people can recite major portions of his principle speech, the “Sermon on the Mount.”
Billions of people on all continents continue to study his words and seek to follow him.
Our calendar is dated from his birth, and major worldwide holidays like Christmas and Easter center on events in his life.
Jesus achieved tremendous global influence in only three years of public life.
His influence was accomplished without money or mass media, without writing any books, without holding an elected office, and without commanding an army. Yet his teachings transformed the world.
In a world where self-interest is the guiding current, we seek to illuminate a worldview that is others-centered, embracing altruism rather than egotism. Jesus offered principles such as servant leadership, humility, integrity, commitment to a small band of friends, reconciliation, courage, forgiveness, and loving others as his strategies for changing the world. We at National Student Leadership hold that true change starts with first changing ourselves and then changing the world.
Our hope is to study these principles intensely and grapple with their meaning. By studying them, we aim to nurture leaders who understand the value of reconciling relationships, standing up for truth, loving God, and loving their neighbor as themselves. We wish to inspire the leaders of tomorrow to pursue a life in leadership with both passion and perspective.