Richard Taunton Students Lead the Way

21st January 2019

Three Richard Taunton Students met with the President of Rotary Club of Southampton recently to receive their Rotary Youth Leadership Awards after completing an intensive leadership experience.

Second-year students Joseph Kitts, Gabrielle Thorne, and Emma Takacova received their awards after participating in and successfully completing a Youth Leadership Course. Selection for participation is achieved by application, followed by an interview process, which then works up to a final selection panel for those who make it through. The Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) is an international programme that encourages young people to develop their leadership skills and challenges them to make a change in themselves and the world around them.

Held over a weekend at Tile Barn Activity Centre in the New Forest, Emma, Gabrielle, and Joseph got the chance to connect and build friendships with students from across the city, whilst working on their self-confidence, leadership, communication and teamwork skills. Participating in a range of practical and theoretical sessions, all aimed to unlock students potential, students focused on problem-solving, heard from community leaders, and discovered strategies to become a dynamic leader.

After receiving their certificates from Rotary President Philip Brazier and Rotary Member Flavia Spooner (also Mrs South Hampshire Galaxy), the students reflected on how the course had helped them;

Joseph said:

By taking part in teamwork activities we strived to understand each other’s strengths and weaknesses, it was so beneficial. As a student union representative, this has been so valuable, a privilege to be able to improve my skills. I would definitely encourage others to apply, particularly if you are a student ambassador, governor or any role that needs leadership qualities.

Emma said:

I really learnt the importance of communication and the confidence to do this well with others. I would often rely on myself to find the answers and get things done, but now I have the confidence to approach others and works as a team. It was great to be surrounded by others whose goals were the same, and to meet new people