blog Harvard | 2min Read
Published on January 28, 2021
The Harvard Youth Lead the Change Program (YLC) is a week-long workshop for high school students, aiming to teach them about Leadership. This year’s Winter 2021 workshop hosted 112 students from 78 schools, 51 cities and 4 countries, through a rigorous selection process.
In the workshop, I learned about the various aspects of leadership such as types of teams and how a leader can handle each: elevator pitches to quickly promote ideas and crowdfunding to support initiatives one takes. There were several lessons based on these topics, paired with comprehensive examples and efficient doubt clarification by the mentors. We even had a grammar session focusing on common errors in diction and writing!
Early in the workshop, we were placed into project groups by our mentors, where each of us had to think about a problem affecting our society. Once we had listed down our ideas, we selected one that we felt would be the most fitting and got to work.
My group, Project Amet, had chosen the topic of eco-friendliness during the COVID-19 pandemic. It focused on creating a product that would use PPE waste generated during the pandemic and turn them into everyday items, such as fuel and handbags. We had to create a funding plan and communication outlets to ensure that once we took our project off the ground, it would be successful.
There were multiple ups and downs throughout the planning of our ideas, from how we would fund them, to the creation of our pitch deck, which we would present in front of not only the entire conference, but our parents as well! All of us were nervous about the quality of our presentations, but we were able to present them with clarity.
Over the course of the Winter 2021 YLC, I learned many new things about leadership and how to optimise the productivity of a team, how to maximise the efficiency of crowdfunding for initiatives one wants to take, and how to clearly and concisely promote ideas. Additionally, this workshop greatly improved my leadership skills.
My favourite part about the Harvard YLC Workshop was the college panels, where we asked questions through an online platform and the mentors answered them. It was extremely compelling learning about life in college and unique experiences at Harvard, such as the annual football matches with Yale.
In conclusion, I believe that the Harvard YLC Workshop was exceptionally effective in teaching all of us about the basics of leadership and provided many of us with an unforgettable experience.