Student leadership camp a success

Leaders can be made: Students attending the closing ceremony of the 2009/2010 Leadership camp for student councillors and prefects held at Maktab Duli yesterday. Pictures: BT/ Fitri Shahminan

Thursday, May 7, 2009

PARENTS can play an important role in developing students' leadership skills through verbal support and encouragement.

In her speech at the closing ceremony of 2009/2010 Leadership Camp for student councillors and prefects at the college's auditorium yesterday, Hjh Seroja Hj Siau, acting principal of Pengiran Muda Al-Muhtadee Billah College (Maktab Duli) said having self-confidence and self-efficacy is not enough without the proper guidance and support of a role model.

Research has shown that students will take on leadership positions if they have their parents' support and blessings, she added. Hjh Seroja said that parents can help students continue their leadership involvement by processing skills that they have learned and supporting their leadership potential. The acting principal also reminded students that the experiences gained from the camp, as well as through their responsibilities as prefects and members of the Student Council, could be applied in their future careers.

"Most of them (the students) are very afraid to speak up on stage," said assistant senior master of student affairs, Hj Affendy Hj Kassim who is also the student council coordinator.

He told The Brunei Times that during the course, participants were given turns to get on stage and speak publicly to gain self-confidence, which was one of the problems students face in the school. He also said that the leadership camp was held to foster relations among the prefects and other college students and teachers.

It was also organised to develop students' leadership skills, which covers public speaking, how to facilitate a meeting and perform administrative roles, as students handle most of the school's events and projects. Some 80 male and female students who were newly-elected as prefects participated in the three-day leadership camp from April 23-26. Out of the 80 participants, 70 were elected prefects of the school and 10 were appointed to the school's student council.

One of the newly appointed prefects, Farah Abadi Rozaini said, "We have learned how to cooperate with each other and were taught how to be the college's role models." She said that the leadership camp has made her more confident than ever, eventhough she has always been an outgoing and approachable person.

Newly elected president of the student council, Amirul Syafiq Noor Azmi, had mixed feelings after succeeding Norul Alhakim Pandin, saying that he needs more guidance from the advisors to assist him in executing his roles and responsibilities as the head of the council.

Excited by his appointment as the president of the council, the former chairman of Peer Guidance Group (PRS) at Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien College (SOAS) said that the leadership skills and time management they learned at the camp would serve them well in their capacity as leaders. He also said that the interactive forum that was conducted during the camp also helped all the participants to better understand their roles well. "The forum taught us what we needed in order to be a good leader and how to achieve that," added Amirul.

During the camp, students were also engaged in religious activities such as the reciting of Ratib Al-Attas and tahlil. Among the objectives of the camp were to familiarise the newly-elected prefects and student council members on the rules and regulation of the college. It was also held to promote leadership qualities and ensure that students would be able to execute their tasks well.

Facilitators of the camp were teachers from the college and officers from the Ministry of Education. The Brunei Times


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