The Ateneo de Naga University Office of Student Affairs (OSA) started the academic year 2022-2023 with the return of the annual Ateneo Workshop on Ignatian Leadership for Life (A-WILL) from a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic. The A-WILL is the first activity under the OSA’s Ateneo Leadership Development Program (ALDP), the flagship program for student leaders and organizations. Sixty (60) student leaders representing thirty (30) student organizations of Ateneo de Naga participated in the 4-day leadership seminar-workshop at the Alingal Multipurpose Hall.
Prior to the workshop proper, OSA organized an online orientation via Zoom on July 23, 2022 to inform the participants regarding the history of the program, the A-WILL framework, and guidelines for the activity proper.
The A-WILL proper formally began on July 26, with a teambuiling session, entitled “Company Placed by Christ” facilitated by Leciel Ramos, chairperson of the Allied Business Courses department of the College of Business and Accountancy. She tasked the participants with various activities focused on group dynamics, communication, and coordination. Ramos also noted the challenge of being in a team-setting after two years of using digital platforms as the means of communication between officers of student organizations. She further discussed several qualities essential to the success of student organizations, such as teamwork, inclusivity, communication, and collective search for the truth and work for justice. Ramos ended her presentation with a challenge to the participants to be sources of light amidst this obscure time and to be conscious of the world they live in.
The 16th iteration of the A-WILL consists of five workshops with corresponding Ignatian leadership topics. Fr. Harvey C. Mateo, S.J., chaplain of the Pacol campus, served as the speaker for the first session. In his presentation, “What can we learn from Ignatian Leadership,” Fr. Mateo discussed traits and qualities of St. Ignatius which helped him during his conversion and the formation of the Society of Jesus. He also shared the leadership experiences and stories of renowned Jesuits, such as Fr Horacio de la Costa.
For the second day, Rene Salvador San Andres, Residence Hall Director of Ateneo de Manila University, served as the resource speaker. San Andres began his session by asking the participants to recall their life journey, particularly the first time they were elected or assigned to be leaders. He then grouped the participants to discuss the qualities of a “good” and “bad” leader and give example of leaders whom they admire or despise. During the afternoon session, San Andres discussed situational leadership or how leaders can adapt to various situations they might encounter.
To test the participants’ understanding of situational leadership, he prepared a simulated game wherein participants should choose the applicable leadership style to a particular situation. After the session, the participants were able to attend the novenary mass of St. Ignatius of Loyola.
Janet B. Badong-Badilla, Executive Director of the Office of Mission and Identity, facilitated the recollection-workshop for the third day. Badilla highlighted that self-awareness is the foundation of leadership; she noted that the participants cannot lead their respective organizations or members if they cannot lead themselves. In order for the participants to know themselves better.
Badilla presented the nine types under the Enneagram, which the participants had taken a test prior to the A-WILL. These types presented the positive and negative qualities of a person. However, Badilla mentioned that student leaders must not limit themselves to their enneagram type but rather understand it and continually improve.
To cap off the third day, Dr. Rufino Ll. Ramos, a Guidance Counselor of the College Guidance Center, shared his leadership journey during his college days until being part of various committees and office in the Ateneo de Naga. He further supplemented the importance of self-awareness by sharing exercises to practice one’s self-awareness.
For the last session, Fr. Roberto E.N. Rivera, S.J., university president, served as the resource speaker. Fr. Rivera discussed the life of St. Ignatius including his dreams and viewpoints prior to and after his conversion. He also discussed the history of the Jesuits and their respective missions in the world. Fr. Rivera then presented the Society of Jesus’ Universal Apostolic Preference and the Philippine Province’s five thrust, and how the university has responded to these calls. After his presentation, he conducted a dialogue with the participants to answer their queries and clarifications pertaining to the university, society, and the Church.
To cap off the four-day seminar-workshop, a processing session was led by Leo Jeremiah Arnel O. Caayao, Program Officer for Student Leadership Development. He asked the participants to group themselves and discuss among their peers their significant learning for the entire A-WILL, create a poster to illustrate their sharing, and present it to their fellow participants. Caayao also tasked the participants to write a letter to their respective organizations for the upcoming school year.
The A-WILL was organized by the Office of Student Affairs together in cooperation with the Office of Mission and Identity. Prayers, which were a vital part of the program, were prepared by the Campus Ministry Office.
To view the A-WILL 2022 Highlights, kindly go to this link: https://tinyurl.com/AWILL2022Highlights