Honors Benefits: Deborah Obi SBSLC

The benefits of participating in the University Honors Program include some things that may be considered more abstract such as our interdisciplinary emphasis, strong community, and focus on personal, professional and intellectual development (see this link: https://tx.ag/HonorsBenefits).

Other benefits are more concrete, such as our partnership with other programs on campus that provide special access to campus conferences that assist our students in their personal, professional, and intellectual development. In the post below, senior university studies – society, ethics & law major, Deborah Obi shares some lessons from her participation in the 31st Southwestern Black Student Leadership Conference, which was supported by the University Honors Program.

Deborah Obi ’20

by Deborah Obi

On January 17-20, 2019, I was fortunate to participate as a Charles E. Williams II Advanced Leadership Institute (A.L.I.) scholar in the 31st annual Southwestern Black Student Leadership Conference (SBSLC). The topic this year was “The Purpose Pursuit.” As an A.L.I. participant, I had the opportunity to engage in exclusive events, such as a contested oratorical contest, unique workshops, and captivating discussions with other like-minded leaders. https://www.linkedin.com/feed/update/urn:li:activity:6506274410419318784

My favorite workshop was the “Importance of communication – Change the tire activity, because I learned how working with others builds qualities in myself. The facilitator, Ms. Kelli McLoud-Schingen requested that we make a step-by-step list of how to change a tire while including illustrations and images. My team and I worked together as we utilized our practical knowledge while ensuring that we used the right technical terms. This was a bonding experience for my team and I as we also celebrated First place in the challenge.

My favorite discussion was the open space dialogue where racism in education, and Institutionalized slavery. I gained a cast meaning of the difference between a First generation African (Born in Africa and migrated) and a second generation African (Born in America to African parents). The conversation allowed me to ask deep questions about African American culture and gained a better understanding of their views on their identity and culture.

To read Deborah’s full entry, visit the post on her ePortfolio at https://www.deborahobi.com/blog/the-pursuit-of-my-purpose-a-l-i-experience.

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