Odyssey Leadership Program Kicks Off 2017-18 Year

Odyssey Leadership Program Kicks Off 2017-18 Year

The University of Mount Olive kicked off its annual Odyssey Leadership program last week. The purpose of the program is to help potential leaders develop a wide array of skills including self-awareness, confidence, and leadership strategies.

The Odyssey Leadership program started in 2011 and began this year with two activities aimed at getting participants to know each other and to teach the importance of communication. The group then did a DiSC assessment; which examines four styles of human behavior:  Dominance (D), Influence (i), Steadiness (S), and Conscientiousness (C).  The assessment helps to explain leadership styles, including strengths and weaknesses, and how certain leaderships styles interact with others. The goal of the DiSC is for the student-athletes to learn more about themselves and to understand that you need to know yourself before you can lead others. They also learned that there are different personality types and to realize that you need to deal differently with people based on their personalities. Dr. Cricket Lane, Associate Athletics Director for Student-Athlete Development, UNC, conducted the DiSC assessment.

"I am really excited to enter my second year as the director of the Odyssey Leadership Program," said David Heller Head Men's Volleyball coach.  "Our overall goal is to teach the student-athletes in this program that leadership is a journey and there are some key elements to make that journey successful.  We will focus on communication, team building, groupthink, overcoming obstacles, and how to deal with stressful situations positively. We had the had 35 student-athletes complete the DiSC assessment and complete the workshop to understand how to better use their leadership and personality type to better the team.  We address the differences between sports with team champions like basketball and soccer and those of sports with some individual champions like track and field and golf.  It is really great to see student-athletes from so many different backgrounds come together and work toward becoming stronger leaders for their teams".  

"Our next few activities will push them farther outside of their comfort zone and that is really when you get to learn what you can be capable of.  I cannot wait to continue on with this group and see what they can accomplish as a part of the Odyssey program as well as with their teams," concluded Heller.  

The next session will be October 10 as part of the NCAA Division II campus retreat at Mount Olive.

The participants, as nominated by their coaches, included:

Fabiana Alcala                   Soccer

Johanna Andersson            Golf

Brittany Barnett                Volleyball

Martin Bayles                    Track & Field

Skye Bradley                     Lacrosse

Kiara Burke                       Lacrosse

Dedric Byrd                       Basketball

Cyerra Carter                     Volleyball

Altan Cornu                       Track & Field/ Cross Country

Scott Dagnanleach             Lacrosse

Brady Deaner                   Track & Field/ Cross Country

Chris Douglas                    Baseball

Areej Fareh                       Tennis

Callie Farrell                      Softball

Vivian Fernandez               Soccer

Layne Gairrett                   Soccer

Tyler Hall                          Soccer

Hannah Glover                  Track & Field

Gregorio Hidalgo-Moreno   Track & Field

Hailey LeMaire                  Cheerleading

Meredith Lorient                Track & Field/ Cross Country

Makayla Nichols                 Basketball

Jack Middleton                  Tennis

Taylor Moncrief                 Track & Field

Jesiah Orr                         Volleyball

Gunner Parson                  Lacrosse

Adam Podnicky                 Golf

Kelly Post                         Basketball

Cameron Robinson            Basketball

Pablo Safont                     Tennis

Patrick Schweitz                Golf

Holly Smith                       Cheerleading

Junior Snow                      Baseball

Charlene Thompson           Softball

Shane Yeo                        Volleyball