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USM students attend veterans leadership seminar in Dallas

photo with former President George W. Bush

Two University of Southern Maine students — Omar Andrews and Camden Ege — graduated from a 15-hour leadership seminar hosted at Dallas’ George W. Bush Presidential Center.

Student Omar Andrews with Jared Lyon, president & CEO of Student Veterans of America

Andrews and Ege joined 91 other graduates from the Student Veterans of America’s 2017 Leadership Institute to meet with high profile mentors. The work was aimed at examining each student’s personal leadership ethos and how to apply it.

“As someone finishing my Master’s in Leadership, I was impressed with how much I learned from this experience,” said Ege, who also serves as USM’s Assistant Veterans Services Coordinator. “It was surprisingly introspective and forced me to think a lot about myself.”

Ege and Andrews, the president of Husky Vets, met with a variety of VIPs. Ege was photographed with Robert McDonald, the former VA secretary and CEO of Proctor & Gamble. Andrews was photographed with Jared Lyon, president & CEO of Student Veterans of America.
Camden Ege with Robert McDonald, the former VA secretary and CEO of Proctor & Gamble

All graduates were gathered for a photo with former President George W. Bush.

To Ege, the seminar forced him to reflect on leadership in a new way.

“I was asked to define leadership,” he said. “As a student in the field, I’m normally just citing others’ definitions, so this was surprisingly challenging. However, here’s what I came up with: 'Leadership is a process of social influence, which maximizes, organizes, and compliments the efforts of others towards the completion of a goal.'

“Secondly, we were asked to look at our top five most important values,” Ege said. “This was a fun activity that challenged us at prioritizing vastly different values. Here are my top 5: purpose, genuineness, dependability, duty and growth.”