Saturday, 12 March 2016

Learning about Leadership in Dunedin

Wow- I've just returned from a full on but amazing week in Dunedin! The purpose of the week was to learn about leadership, and how to lead science in our school when we return. I went down a couple of days early to spend some time gaining some more science experience- in a cancer research lab! Here I spent time learning about the methods and protocols used for cancer research, and compared treated and untreated cancer cells under the microscope. Did you know that 3 different cell lines account for 2/3 of all cells used for breast cancer research? The cancer cells I was looking at came from the MCF-7 Line, from a 69 year old nun named Frances Mallon, who died in 1970. Her cells are the source of most of  the current knowledge about breast cancer. 

The course was based around the book called "The leadership Challenge" by Kouzes and Posner. We also received anonymous feedback from out colleagues at school about the leadership skills we demonstrate, and we found out about about our Myers- Briggs personality type, and our strengths and weaknesses. 
The book says there are 5 key steps to becoming a great leader.
During the course we learned about each dimension in detail. These are modelling the way, inspiring a shared vision, challenging the process, enabling others to act and encouraging the heart. We also had to give a speech at the start of the week, and the end of the week. It was amazing to see how much everyone changed and became so much more confident during the week.

On Wednesday night, we took some time out from our full on week to explore the sights of Dunedin, in Classic Jaguars! We saw the beatiful view over Dunedin from Signal Hill, ran up Baldwin Street; the steepest street in the word (the hill climbing at Rotokare is paying off!), and visited the majestic train station, before a delicious Italian meal. 

I left the course feeling inspired, and I felt I learned so much about myself, and how I can maximise my strengths and work on my weaknesses. I can't wait to lead science at Auroa School. 

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