Developing leadership skills is a key component in preparing College of Pharmacy students for their future careers, and the Walker Leadership Scholars team took on the role of designing a leadership week for students.
Inspired in part by UofSC President Bob Caslen’s book, “The Character Edge, Leading and Winning with Integrity,” the scholars launched Leaders Developing Leaders, a week-long opportunity to advance their own leadership skills and that of their fellow students.
Activities for the week, held from March 5 – 12, included a student leadership panel, discussions on crisis management leadership, and featured speaker President Caslen.
Donna Walker had the vision for students and leadership development, and our Walker Leadership Scholars have taken on the challenge to develop this program ...
Stephen J. Cutler, Ph.D. Dean, College of Pharmacy
To kick off the week, WLS founder Donna Walker ('79 B.S., pharmacy, '84 MBA), led a question and answer session with 61 first-year pharmacy students and the WLS scholars, focusing on her career path and inspiration to create the WLS program.
Students also participated in a virtual presentation with Rick Foster, M.D., medical consultant for Population Health and Community Health Equity for the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control and South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. Foster provided feedback and advice on crisis plans which students created during the session.
How do you inspire character? By being a leader of character yourself and living those values ...
UofSC President Bob Caslen
Nearly 100 students, faculty, and staff joined Walker and Caslen on the virtual event to learn more about insights on leadership and character development.
Caslen believes that of all the traits that make a leader, character is the most important.
“How do you inspire character? By being a leader of character yourself and living those values,” he says. “When people see those values within you, they see you as a role model and want to emulate you.”
The leadership week wrapped with a student panel. Aditya Pradhan, Gracie Hill, Michael Deaney, Delvin ‘Del’ Omer and Vanessa Poirier led a discussion on leadership positions before and during COVID-19, balancing leadership positions and school, and how to be a leader without a title.
Fourth-year student and Walker Leadership Scholar Alexis Caronis was pleased with the results of the inaugural Leaders Developing Leaders week.
“The Walker Leadership Scholars set out to create new events that provided an opportunity for attendees to develop themselves as leaders,” she says. “WLS looks forward to LDL Week next year and providing leadership development opportunities for all pharmacy students.”
Dean Stephen J. Cutler is grateful to Walker for her efforts to inspire leadership in College of Pharmacy students.
“Donna Walker had the vision for students and leadership development, and our Walker Leadership Scholars have taken on the challenge to develop this program,” he says. “This enables our students to gain experience in developing others and pharmacy students to grow their leadership skills.”