As a way to start building a cohesive group, all Fellows engage in 7-minute introductions. During each introduction, the Fellow shares with his/her classmates who they are, the key influences in their lives and the legacy they wish to leave.
The first session provides a foundation for the ALF experience. Presentations include the history and philosophical framework of ALF, an overview of the aspects and issues in the Waccamaw region and an introduction of a model for effective community leadership. During this session, Fellows discuss the need for civic leadership and the importance of the common good in our communities.
Self as Leader/StrengthsFinder
This session first focuses on identifying individual strengths. Participants then learn how to nurture and develop those strengths, both personally and professionally. Each class member is given StrengthsFinders 2.0 by Tom Rath and will take an on-line assessment to help determine their strengths prior to the session.
Community Building Experience
The Community Building Experience takes place in the wilderness and is the pivotal component for the rest of the ALF year. The group is immersed in problem-solving, physical challenges and personal reflection. This powerful experience encourages Fellows to learn to trust each other and push themselves beyond self- imposed limits.
Leading Across Differences
This session fosters a deeper sense of community within the group by creating the space for participants to surface and explore their differences. Through awareness-building experiences and focused dialogues, participants are invited to unpack closely-held values and belief systems as a means to unlock the shared wisdom of the group. The session will heighten the personal awareness necessary to effectively lead across differences on a community level.
Dialogue is essential to the work of ALF. Bringing together diverse leaders requires the capacity to develop as a cohesive group while at the same time exploring challenging topics. Sessions will focus on developing the capacity to have difficult conversations while remaining connected. Participants develop their abilities to listen more effectively, generate dialogue that moves a group forward, identify interests behind positions and develop creative options.