Twitter FaceBook

A project of LVCIL
Funded by the PADDC

2015-2016 Contest Winners

The 3 Winners:

Sienna Lehner - Marion Elementary School: Belle Vernon, PA


Kelsey Bell - Cedar Crest High School: Lebanon, PA

Sage Minton - Northampton High School: Northampton, PA

I know I’m only seventeen, but leadership plays a major role in my life. I believe that anyone can become a leader if they have the characteristics that leadership demands. In my opinion, leadership means confidence, determination, passion to make things “ever better,” and kindness to reach a helping hand to those in need.

To me, being a leader means that you know who you are and what you can offer. Leaders know their strengths, and they work to improve their weaknesses. They have confidence in themselves and their abilities so that they can work successfully and set an example to those who are watching. If a leader is not confident, it could be difficult to find anyone who will listen or follow in their footsteps.

Leaders have an incredible amount of determination. They are not afraid to work hard to achieve their goals, and they know how to overcome obstacles. Instead of seeing a challenge and walking away, leaders think of a way to “jump over the hurdle” and continue on their path to success. Without determination, leaders would lack the drive it takes to work hard no matter what comes their way, and very few goals would be achieved.

I also believe that being a leader means implementing positive change. Leaders must be passionate about their work, and they should never be satisfied. A true leader is always working to improve what they do, how they do it, and the lives of those involved. To me, leadership means that your job is never done, and you must see how you can make your work “ever better” in the future.

My final thought on leadership is that it means helping people. Leaders are never afraid to assist in any situation, whether it be helping someone find a book in the library or hosting a prom dress drive so that every girl has the chance to attend in a beautiful dress. To me, leadership means that you take your strength and use it to build upon others’. By simply helping one person or a few people, you can inspire others to do the same and in the end, you will have affected thousands. This is what the purest form of leadership is; to take action and make positive change, no matter the size of the act.

I have shown my idea of leadership through my life by starting The Volunteer Club at my school. We are 92 members strong this year, and accomplish many tasks. We tutor underprivileged elementary school students weekly, bake goods and take them to the nursing home monthly, distribute food at the local food bank monthly, and host many other events. These larger events include a donation drive for the food bank, a cancer fundraiser competition, a “Giving Tree” toy drive for the local children’s hospital, a blanket-making session benefitting patients at the children’s hospital with Girl Scouts to teach them about volunteerism, a used shoe drive for developing countries, and many more types of events. This club has changed my life, and shown me how to be a successful leader. I don’t want to leave it behind, but I know I will find so many more leadership opportunities in the years to come.

Thank you for your time and consideration.


Sage Minton