May 19, 2013 (New Haven) Purdue students enrolled in the Boiler ESTEEM program at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Center at Purdue attended a national leadership conference at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.
During a three-day weekend in April, the future leaders of the Catholic Church gathered to share ideas, learn new skills, network, develop professionally, grow spiritually, and create a shared vision for engaging in the Church as leaders now and forever. The event was the 2013 ESTEEM Capstone Conference, a three-day Catholic student leader gathering at the Saint Thomas More Center at Yale.
ESTEEM Capstone Conference is an annual opportunity for Catholic college student leaders who participate all year long in their campus ESTEEM programs to meet each other and reaffirm the vision of this innovative initiative. The three-day conference began with the students from each school presenting the highlights of their yearlong ESTEEM programs. This created an environment of sharing best practices that carried over into the evening.
On the second day, the conversation continued with two alumni from past ESTEEM programs sharing stories of their personal journeys of getting engaged as leaders in the church after graduation. Next, Kerry Robinson, the executive director of the National Leadership Roundtable on Church Management shared the history and vision of ESTEEM. After an inspiring morning, the students participated in a participatory exercise of discovering their own gifts through taking and discussing the DiSC Evaluation.
The afternoon also included a keynote by author and Catholic TV commentator, Matt Weber. Matt Weber, through personal stories and humor, connected with the students and gave them strategies to stay excited and engaged in the issues and advancements of the Catholic Church. The rest of the afternoon allowed student leaders to meet in small groups to develop new ideas for the national ESTEEM initiative as well as the ESTEEM programs on their own campuses. The second day of the conference ended in celebration. Bishop Peter A. Rosazza led the delegation in Mass in the Saint Thomas More Chapel followed by formal dinner. Following dinner, most delegates took advantage of being on the Yale campus by attending a ballet performance. Networking and fellowship continued after the performance and into the evening.
During the final morning of the conference on Sunday, the delegates participated in a lively brainstorming session on the key elements of the ESTEEM curriculum. By the end of the conference, the young Catholic leaders were even more equipped to strengthen their campus’ ESTEEM program and more confident to become true leaders in their Church. The ESTEEM advisory committee announced that there are plans to expand ESTEEM to more schools, to create a means for ESTEEM alumni to stay connected with each other and another Capstone Conference at Yale would be scheduled for next spring. A couple of examples that the conference was a success are students from Michigan State and Purdue have arranged to collaborate on a service project next year and the ESTEEM Facebook page exploded with posts shortly after the conference ended from conference delegates from the various schools.
ESTEEM is a nationwide program to develop the leadership skills of young Catholic students at private, Catholic, and secular colleges and universities across the nation. An initiative of the National Leadership Roundtable on Church Management and Saint Thomas More Catholic Chapel & Center at Yale, ESTEEM (Engaging Students to Enliven the Ecclesial Mission) focuses on the core competencies of spirituality, education, community and service. Employing a multifaceted approach, ESTEEM provides college students with the inspiration and tools for deeper engagement in the life and witness of the Church.
The ESTEEM campuses are as follows:
- Michigan State University
- Ohio State University
- Purdue University
- Robert Morris University
- Stanford University
- Texas Technical University
- University of California at Berkeley
- University of California at Los Angeles
- Yale University
These future leaders of the Church from St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Center at Purdue were sent home from the ESTEEM Capstone Conference with renewed focus and determination that will surely have an impact on the Catholic world. They are not only committed to becoming Church leaders after graduation but also to sharing their experiences with Boiler ESTEEM with the current parishioners in hopes that the program will grow at Purdue.
The Boiler ESTEEM students are as follows:
- Maria Lina Andvik (graduate student in Psychology from Bergen, Norway)
- Tim Brown (senior in Computer Engineering from Kokomo, Indiana)
- Hannah R Burgess (senior in General Health Sciences/Pre-Medicine from Jasper, Indiana)
- Juan A. Crespo (senior in Atmospheric Science from South Bend, Indiana)
- Marie-Catherine Dube (junior in Industrial Design from Goose Creek, South Carolina)
- Mark Hiew (doctorate student in Veterinary medicine from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
- Benjamin J Horstman (senior in Nuclear Engineering from Lafayette, Indiana)
- Heather E Keegan (first-year Pharmacy doctorate student from Eldersburg, Maryland)
- Alexander Kosiak (junior in Biochemistry from Westfield, Indiana)
- Anne E Krasniak (first-year Pharmacy doctorate student from Owego, New York)
Communications and Development Officer & Program Coordinator for ESTEEM (Engaging Students to Enliven the Ecclesial Mission)
National Leadership Roundtable on Church Management
1350 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036
This post was recently published in current issue (May 19, 2013) of The Catholic Moment – Serving the Diocese of Lafayette-in-Indiana.
To view a PDF of the article in The Catholic Moment, click HERE.
To view more photos of the Boiler ESTEEM students at the ESTEEM Capstone Conference, click HERE.
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