Opportunities for all: Student leadership at QAHS
Students are milling about, talking and eating before the meeting. There is a white board at the front of the room, and already it is partially filled with various ideas and plans. This is the room where the ideas for improving Queensland Academy for Health Sciences are brought forward and discussed. This is the room filled with the potential leaders of our future.
At QAHS, students are encouraged to be involved in a number of leadership based activities. In contrast to the hierarchical structure of student leadership at many other schools, QAHS enables all students to experience opportunities to develop their leadership skills. Whilst there are badged positions such as Year Level Student Executives and House Leaders all students can be involved in leadership experiences.
Ben Smith, Year 11 Student Executive commented, ‘I believe that developing my leadership skills early while I am at school will be beneficial to my career. I also enjoy having the position and the responsibility of taking forward suggestions from my fellow students.’
Every year, students participate in a leadership training workshop and are invited to attend leadership workshops and special Leadership Breakfasts organised by Mrs Annette Jackson (Head of Student Services). These breakfasts attract many aspiring student leaders, not only because of the complimentary hash browns, but because of the incredibly inspirational speakers that make it such a worthwhile experience.
Recent speakers included Di Aiken, who has over 35 years of extensive experience in the finance and insurance industries at senior management level and major project specialist roles, currently working for the largest general insurance company in Australia. Another guest speaker was actor, singer and business owner, Michael Tuahine. Michael is a successful National Institute of Dramatic Arts (NIDA) graduate, one of only a handful of Indigenous graduates in NIDA’s sixty-year history.
Lorna Hudson and Cindy Huang