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Newsworthy

BCIL Engages Students in "Ocean Challenge" at 9th Grade Retreat
by Katie McKellar, Assistant Director of the Belldegrun Center for Innovative Leadership

One element of the 9th Grade Virtual Retreat was an “Ocean Challenge” led by the BCIL Collaborative, during which students reflected on their own leadership styles and strengths as well as their advisory group team dynamics. In this activity, students ranked a list of ocean supplies in order of importance and then reconsidered their rankings in the context of a group setting. They then compared both of their lists to a ranking established by the U.S. Coast Guard. Upon reflection, most students found value in the collaborative decision making process.

“My rankings were closer in the group round. I think this is because we had different voices and ideas, so we had more knowledge,” said Julianna F. ’24.

In the final reflections, students were asked to identify some leadership strengths they brought to the activity and how this might inform their role in the Brentwood community this year: “My strengths are figuring out a problem and solving it. I love to communicate with other people and figure it out not individually but as a team. I enjoy making sure that everyone is involved” said Nathan D. ’24.  

Overall, it was a fun way for students to bond as an advisory group and begin the year thinking about ways to make sure advisory is a space where all students have a voice: “Our advisory is already bonding, and we are all comfortable talking and sharing our opinions. I think all of us feel like we're in a community. I love making sure everyone is having fun and feels comfortable and included” said Addison M. ’24. Students will have a chance to build on these discussions in advisory groups throughout the year as well as additional leadership training opportunities with the BCIL. 

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