UNE Leadership Retreat 2017

Loren Beale

This past weekend I attended the “Lucens et Ardens” leadership retreat. It was a tiering, but fun, weekend full of growth and self-discovery. On Saturday, the group attended the day of service and helped clean up Fort McClary in Kittery, Maine. We were there cleaning and gardening for two hours before hitting the road again to drive to the center.

The place we stayed at was the Sargent Center- Natures Classroom Retreat Center. It was a beautiful camp ground with a huge lake and amazing forest. After settling in, we ate some pretty great food, far better than Decary, and discussed what it means to be a leader. After some deep conversations about ourselves and our personality types, we took on a few challenges. These games allowed us to work together and solve issues that might come up in the real world. Later that night we had smores, which was definitely the highlight of that day, and then we did one last exercise that brought smiles and some tears of joy to everyone who took part.

The next morning everyone reluctantly rolled out of bed and we started off the day with some great breakfast. Then we split into groups of two and were given a guide to take us out onto the trails to do even more difficult leadership challenges.

My groups guide was named Magic, he had a man braid. It was pretty awesome. The challenges we faced were super fun and I feel they helped me better understand how to face problems in a group setting. It almost felt as if I was on an episode of Survivor but without the drama. I made so many friends and enjoyable memories going through the woods and getting though the courses. I really felt a part of a team even though we had only been together for a day.

Both groups discussed what we did for challenges when we got back to the center. The other group seemed to have just as good of a time as we did! We ate lunch and then got onto the bus to leave. I slept the entire ride home. It was a fantastic weekend and I felt I discovered a lot about myself, but as a college student, I had no energy left by the end. On top of it all I had an exam that upcoming week.

Overall, I wish the retreat had been two to three weeks earlier, it is hard having it a month in because that is when classes really start to get hard and begin giving out exams. However, I did have an amazing time and would recommend it to anyone who wants to be recognized as a leader on campus. I am glad I was able to meet so many people that share the same ideals as I do, and then become friends with all of them. It was tiering, but worth it. I am stronger leader than I was yesterday.