Thursday, March 17, 2011

Speaking to the student body of the Hong Kong Institute of Vocational Education (HKIVE)

A wonderful opportunity awarded by the US Consulate of HK, department of Cultural Affairs to speak at the "Cultural Awareness" week for the Hong Kong Institute of Vocational Education (HKIVE). An auditorium full of students from various backgrounds and ages were the audience. A wonderful group of leaders greeted me at the door and I was introduced immediately to some of their most outstanding students, the honor roll and shook hands with those who are about to graduate.  I had a bottle of water, my folder with notes and a bag full of Regent University goodies....these provided by our wonderful staff at RSU (thank you- students loved the red flags, pens and Regent logo balls).

Upon being contacted to represent the US Consulate as a Fulbright Scholar at events such as these, I thought of some great topics and themes. Immediately, I knew I had to present on Leadership and Vision. Given that these students are making career decisions, I felt moved to speak about personal goal setting, becoming a leader regarding your very own future. Reminding the students that leadership is not about position but about attitude, behavior and personal growth. Vision is a image of what we seek to attain, the goals lead us to that place. I quoted several leaders, noted statistics, but more importantly encouraged those listening. I voiced in many places, more than once that leadership comes from within, and that many are watching and much is learned through observation. It is about integrity, honesty, responsibility.....

So the questions came flooding out of the audience-- What about failure? is it possible to have something good from failure. Absolutely, failure gives us the opportunity to rethink to reposition and make stronger decisions. Then the next question, about hard choices in life, being confident about choosing the proper career, and it went on.  Everyone was so delighted that students engaged in such a way. Adelaide, my host and guide, was pleased and continually reminded me that this is rare to have such return.

The accomplishment is great and the encouragement was felt, but more than anything it is a seed of hope, bringing understanding that vision is important, stated strongly that without vision the people will perish. These are challenging words by the old testament prophet. The encouragement comes from knowing that we are not alone.

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