Trent Lott Leadership Institute Works to Prepare Future Leaders

Application for rising juniors and seniors open for the 2021 Pathways to Leadership Workshop

Archive Photo: High school students from across the state gather with Ryan Upshaw (back row, second from left), former assistant dean for student services in the UM School of Engineering, at the Trent Lott Leadership Institute in 2018. The Lott Institute is inviting rising high school juniors and seniors from the Mississippi Gulf Coast and southern regions of the state to apply for the UM Pathways to Leadership conference taking place July 16-18 at the Mississippi Aquarium in Gulfport. Submitted photo

OXFORD, Miss.­­­ – The University of Mississippi‘s Trent Lott Leadership Institute is accepting applications for a two-day workshop from rising 11th and 12th graders who attend high school in south Mississippi and want to enhance their leadership abilities and make a difference in their schools and communities.

The 2021 Pathways to Leadership Workshop will take place July 16-18 at the Mississippi Aquarium in Gulfport.

William Gottshall, executive director of the Lott Institute, explained that the principal goal of this event is to help students gain valuable training that will allow them to become better leaders in their communities and in their future college careers.

“Since its inception in 2000, the Lott Leadership Institute has had as its primary mission to prepare young people to assume positions of leadership in an increasingly complex world,” Gottshall said.

“We are particularly interested in helping the students of our state who want to effect positive changes in their own hometowns.”

The event, led by Ole Miss faculty as well as various Mississippi community leaders and professionals, will aid students as they work to define their own individual leadership styles and objectives. Students will gain greater knowledge of local and state leadership and learn more about becoming contributing members of society.

Participants will be involved in break-out sessions with fellow juniors and seniors to examine leadership principles, the importance of local leadership and civic engagement opportunities.

The program is designed to meet students from the Coast and southern parts of Mississippi near their hometowns to provide them with specific pathways to leadership that encompass each student’s individual skills and talents, said Melissa Jones, associate director of the Lott Institute.

“During the conference, students who have a commitment and passion for their community and state will see themselves in the leadership roles discussed as they learn more about what it takes to be a successful leader,” she said. “They will also receive advice and make connections with other student leaders that can prepare them for successful college careers and beyond.”

To participate, south Mississippi high school guidance counselors and principals are invited to nominate rising juniors and seniors by April 15.

Students who would like to be nominated should contact to their school administrators. Nominated students will be required to complete a short application, provide a resume that includes service activities, and respond to one essay question by the May 15 application deadline.

The program fee is $150 and some scholarship funding may be available.