- All News
- Search News
- BLI announces a new Access Opportunity
- Barger Leadership Institute is moving!
- BLI Announces New Partnership with The London Idea
- Former Jet Blue CEO donates $10 million to Barger Leadership Institute
- BLI Hires a New Assistant Director
- BLI to Co-Host ‘Extreme by Design’ Film Screening, Discussion
- BLI awards Small Grant for Halfway Hijabi event
- BLI Launches New Capstone Experience
- BLI Launches New Fellows Program Structure
- Keep Calm and Lead On
- BLI Fellow Wins Wolverine Tank Pitch Contest
- BLI Congratulates Mya Haynes
- BLI Alumni Receive 2015-2016 Fulbright Honor
- The 2018 London Ideas Project is Announced
- Congrats to BLI partner Sandra Levitsky for being awarded the Golden Apple!
- Congrats to BLI Fellow and Peer Facilitator Elisabeth Benham
- Tales of Leadership: The Advanced Fellows Journey
- Welcome to the 2018 Capstone Cohort!
- BLI welcomes new director!
- BLI Across the Pond
- BLI Hosts Voting Guru Nancy Thomas
- Ram Mahalingam's award winning film to be screened at two film festivals.
- The Capstone Experience with the Migrant Education Initiative
- The Mindful Leader - Becoming an Engaged Leader
- A Weekend of Mindful Leadership
- Introducing the 2019 Capstone Teams
- The Peer Facilitator Experience
- Dinners with...
- BLI Students Start Small and Dream Big in Detroit
- From Freshman to Senior Year -- Four Years of Leadership Learning
- BLI Speaker Series: Food For Thought
- BLI Director, Ram Mahalingam featured in the Record
- Capstone Bootcamp 2019
- In a Distracted World, Solitude is Practice for Tomorrow’s Leaders
- A Conversation on Mindfulness, Bias and Racial Justice — a podcast with Ram Mahalingam
- The Mindful Leaders Retreat — Laying a Foundation
- Being a good leader is knowing when to practice gratitude
- Channeling Mindfulness
- Compassionate Leadership: Creating a Just, Inclusive and Mindful Society with Mirabai Bush
- Dinners With...
- Announcing Capstone 2020 Teams!
- Meet our 2020 Leadership Lab Teams!
- Leading Mindfully
- A Senior's Reflection on Peer Facilitating
- Expect Challenges
- Reflecting Back and Looking Forward
- From Leadership Lab, to Peer Facilitator, to Program Assistant
- Project Healthy Schools Global
- Learning to be an Effective Leader
- Leading Life with Dignity: A Challenge of Our Time
- Pause, Reflect, and Create
- What's Happening in the Lab?
- Capstone 3D Virtual Gallery
- Announcing the Break Away Podcast!
- BLI Advanced Fellow featured in M-LEAD's Leadership Lens Series!
- Two BLI Advanced Fellows Receive the Renowned MLK Spirit Award
- Stand Against Asian Violence
- BLI Hosts Alumni Panel
- Announcing the BLI's 2021 Capstone Cohort
- BLI Offers COVID-19 Hardship Grants
- ALA 175: Foundations in Leadership
- The Peer Facilitator Leadership Experience
- What's Happening in the Lab
- Capstone Boot Camp 2021
- Mindful Leader Reflection
- Archived News
- All Events
A group of five BLI Alumni, Mya Harris (‘20), Raeruth Oleshansky (‘18), Jon Rubenstein (‘18), Patrick Mullan-Koufopoulos (‘17), and Clara Li(‘18), were featured at the Alumni Panel on March 4th. The alumni on the panel represented a wide spectrum of BLI programmings such as the Mindful Leader Program, Program Assistant (PA), Peer Facilitator (PF), and Capstone cohorts. During the event, they discussed how their BLI experience translated into their professional and educational pursuits and how they continue to practice leadership beyond Michigan.
The panel began with quick introductions followed by questions surrounding the BLI and how it had helped the panelists begin their professional lives. The panelists' advice to BLI students provided fantastic, from book recommendations to practices for a healthy work-life balance.
Patrick, emphasizing the effects the BLI has had on his professional journey, shared his experience that his post-college life working at a refugee camp and as a teacher has been like one big group project. An experience he is well versed in from his time working with the BLI.
Rae, echoing Patrick's sentiment, highlighted the importance of working to grow by seeking feedback from superiors and colleagues, "I’m very thankful that the BLI enabled me to understand that I'm still learning. I always have a willingness to receive feedback." Rae, as a PF in the BLI, was continuously giving feedback to students in the lab, even when it was a difficult conversation at times.
Mya, when discussing how students can most take advantage of the BLI program, highlighted the importance of building relationships and collaboration within the workplace, "You have such a unique opportunity to observe team dynamics and observe other people's strengths and use that in a phenomenal way and boosting your project to a different level, everyone has their own unique strengths and just being able to understand that can have a huge difference."
When speaking on how the BLI influenced his current leadership role as a teacher today, Jon stated, “One of the biggest things the BLI did for me was to provide a toolkit for ways that you might approach making big decisions or when you come to forks in the road in your life.”
Clara emphasized the importance of getting to know one's community, a concept instilled in her through the BLI. “I was able to find volunteer opportunities through established programs in my workplace, this has made all the difference, as I have been more cognizant of how I’m spending my time and what spaces I am in.”
This panel was extremely informative and a valuable experience for attendees. Some main lessons learned were the importance of feedback, taking advantage of networking opportunities in the virtual world, and identifying and evaluating your strengths and weaknesses.
Throughout the Alumni Panel, many habits were referenced by the panelists. Some key mentions include Start Small, Value Difference, and Pause & Reflect. BLI founder Dave Barger emphasized the importance of being able to step back and reflect on your vision, “the habit that over time I wish I would have learned earlier was Pause and Reflect.” Leadership learning is a lifelong habit, and we are very grateful to the alumni for coming to the event and sharing their stories.