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26th Aug, 2016

I Took a Leap and I Liked It!
by Celestine Onomo on August 26, 2016 14:02


I took a Leap and I liked it…

A year ago, I graduated from Leap and immediately emailed the 2016 COC Director to let him know that I wanted to get involved in the next year’s programme.  This was an important goal for me in 2016 and I am so pleased to look back and realise that I did it.

Moving from delegate to trainer, I have managed to learn more about myself and others. I was able to reinforce some of the outcomes from the year before and realise some new ones. Last year, I was a Local Director  and this year I’m President and over the past year the skills I gained during LEAP 2015 have come in  handy during a very busy and challenging year.

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Photo credit: Neal Stirk

From receiving advice to giving advice: I realised that I have a lot to offer to others and vice versa. One of the best moments was when I saw our ex Intern Ruthie, who took part in the academy, and realised how much she had gained and learnt by our side.

Taking me out  of my comfort zone (again), I delivered two training sessions with advanced trainers (thanks for your patience guys!), led the icebreakers as well as a team exercise. This really was an experience like no other. Why? Because it feels incredibly good to share your knowledge and experience with others and see how different delegates learn from each other.

It is such a positive and empowering experience to be listened to for what you know and to be congratulated for what you’ve achieved, even when you didn’t realise how well you have done!

And finally, to see how our great delegates have changed across the weekend.

Don't be scared to challenge yourself, it feels just good. I have enjoyed every minute of it and I can see my desire for training is also growing. This is definitely an outcome I didn’t see coming as it was not one of my main reasons for joining JCI.  But it is definitely one that will make me stay(until I’m too old for the J in JCI ).


Want to know more about LEAP? I guess I will see you next year because what happens on LEAP stays on leap.

Célestine, a great trainer to be.

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3rd Aug, 2016

New Intern on the Block: Off the Block
by on August 3, 2016 13:54


And this is it. 4 weeks later and it's all over. 4 weeks of social media, CMS and list making, and now its back to being a student. Here we are.

It's not been what I expected. But then again, what right-minded 21 year old intern would expect to be welcomed so warmly and with so much trust. I certainly didn't anticipate the crash course in marketing that I've been given (though I'm not sure the Boston Matrix and the 7Ps are going to stay in my head). And most of all, I didn't expect to be leaving with this sense of accomplishment. I didn't think I'd be leaving and being able to look back on the website or the facebook or the eventbrite and say "I did that. I wrote that". I've learnt a lot. I've done a lot. I've met a lot of really great people. And I've had the best time.

Since I last wrote, I've been focusing on the new membership benefits package, the bid for national convention, and sourcing donations for the Gala Dinner. I've been sending a lot of emails. A lot. Like, so many. And I have been overwhelmed by the support that JCI gets from the local business community. A lot of the great work we do, be it training, networking or community, we couldn't really do without their help. Also Google. Google has been a godsend.

The strange thing is, in true "life-changing moment" style, I'm not really leaving. Sure, I'm not going to be a member of JCI Southampton, and I'm not going to be in the Kaplan office looking for local independent restaurants and sourcing JCI flags, but as I said last time I'm still a member. Come September I'll be with JCI London, and later this month I'll be going to LEAP for the first time. Come October I'll be back for the annual Gala Dinner (because after writing about it for 4 weeks solid I couldn't exactly miss it). If you're headed to any of these, look out for the girl with a massive grin on her face. That will be me. Please say hi.

So, to anyone who I've met while on socials: it was great to meet you, sorry for being a massive nerd. To the guys at Kaplan: thanks for putting up with me, you guys make the best tea. To Celestine: thanks for taking the chance on me, I hope I've made you proud. To my parents: yes I'm sorry I'm coming home now.

It's been a dream JCI Southampton. I'll see you soon.

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