OASL Newsletter

Ohio Association of Student Leaders, September 2020

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The Ohio Association of Student Leaders is an organization dedicated to the teaching of leadership skills, organizational skills, and people skills valuable to the members and officers of all student organizations!

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Light on Leadership Social Media Campaign

Stepping up to the plate through times of unprecedented circumstances is what makes an unforgettable leader. Leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr during the civil rights movement, George W. Bush during 9/11, Nelson Mandela during apartheid, and so many more have demonstrated that there is not a perfect time or place for leadership. That time comes when YOU choose it. You have the power over what makes you as a leader. A great opportunity doesn’t make a good leader, a good leader makes a great opportunity. Due to that, leadership isn’t built into our DNA. It is built through who we surround ourselves with and the experiences we live through. So, let’s take the time to celebrate our leaders and everything that makes them who they are. OASL is proud to present Lights on Leadership…

Lights on Leadership is a new OASL event that puts the influences and skills that build and develop leadership on center stage. We kick off our fall events by reflecting on the leadership skills that got us to where we are today. Throughout the week of October 5th to 9th, join us as OASL shines a special spotlight on schools, advisors, coaches, actions, alumni, community leaders, and student leaders! Our State Representatives will begin each day of the week explaining the importance of our daily theme and examples of it in our everyday lives. Then, it’s YOUR turn! We will post questions on our Instagram (@the_oasl) and we want you to share your reflections and/or pictures by posting and tagging us. Finally, we will end our week with our Leadership Launch on Saturday night! Join us as we get together to meet old and new faces while playing Musical Bingo, escaping Breakout Rooms, attempting trivia, and more!

Monday, October 5th we spotlight SCHOOLS - one of the first places we get to practice being leaders. You get to share with us how your schools or administrators have helped you become a better leader.

Tuesday, Ocobter 6th we highlight the ADVISORS and COACHES who are often our early role models of leadership and the ones who inspire us to reach out of our comfort zones. Did someone pop into your mind? Share those advisors and coaches who have made an impact on your life with us.

Wednesday, October 7th - we look at the ACTIONS that have spoken louder than words. On Wednesday, take the time to look around for the actions that have helped shape you as a leader or the actions YOU have taken to inspire leadership.

Thursday, October 8th - we bring the light to our COMMUNITY LEADERS and ALUMNI. We encourage you to share those community leaders or alumni you have made a difference in your life.

Friday, October 9th we shine our light on our STUDENT LEADERS. The spark behind all ideas and actions start with a single person. Today, we look at how YOU can be that person. Share how you or someone else has exemplified leadership.

Throughout the week, make sure to wear the daily colors, check out the prompts, and share YOUR thoughts with us!

Join us as our week comes to an end on Saturday night at our Leadership Launch. Why? Because the leader in all of us deserves to be celebrated. We will commemorate the themes of the week that mold us into the leaders we become while making memories with friends new and old.

However, noticing and reflecting on our circumstances and influences isn’t enough. Join us on our fall adventure as we continue to take the conversation forward, continue to grow as leaders, and continue to shine our light across Ohio, and the World.

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OASL is proud to launch this brand new digital program for student leaders in grades 6-12. The program dates run from October 13 through November 11th.

In this weekly series, students will engage with one another as they explore key elements of impactful leadership.

Participants choose the time/day that works best for their schedule:

  • Tuesdays 4:30-5:30 - October 13, 20, 27 & November 3, 10

  • Wednesdays 7:30-8:30 - October 14, 21, 28 & November 4, 11

Topics include:

  • A Leader’s Perspective: It’s Beyond Me

  • A Leader’s Attitude: Adaptability & Growth

  • A Leader’s Mission: Service to Others

  • A Leader’s Vision: Creating Positive Change

  • A Leader’s Strength: Courage, Empathy, & Action

Cost for the series is $50 for an individual student. School advisors or administrators may wish to take advantage of significant savings by registering as a group:

  • 7-11 students: $300

  • 12-17 students: $400

  • 18-24 students: $500

  • 25+ students: contact Connie Miley for pricing

Click here to register by October 12th!

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Join us for our final event of the fall season--Virtual Fall Retreat 2020! This event provides middle level and senior high students the opportunity to participate in experiential learning with other student leaders across Ohio! Come spend a weekend with us on Zoom as we explore key leadership concepts over the course of a weekend together. For 2020, we are proud and excited to offer our Fall Retreat program in an engaging and interactive virtual format!

Students will work as part of a small group throughout the weekend to discover and develop the skills, attitudes, and behaviors necessary for effective leadership. Our theme this fall is Communication, and Senior High will dive deep as they explore how Diversity affects Communication. Additionally, delegates will enjoy meeting student leaders from other schools across Ohio and making new friends who also help create positive changes in their hometowns.

PROGRAM NOTES: Participants must be present for the full program on both days. All sessions will take place via Zoom. Login information will be sent to the email address provided on the Registration Form.

When: Saturday, November 14th 12:30-4:30pm* & Sunday, November 15th 1:00-3:30pm. (*Note: There will be an optional event on Saturday evening from 7:30-8:30pm)

Where: In the comforts of your own home :)

Cost: $30.00 per student (OASL member schools). $40.00 per student (non-member schools).

Registration Deadline: November 9, 2020

Click here for more information and registration form!

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Click here to complete your school’s Membership Registration Form for the 2020-2021 school year!

All 2019-2020 memberships expire on September 30th. Member pricing for the Fall Student Leader Series will remain in effect through October 31st.

OASL depends on membership revenue to help cover operational expenses and keep our program fees low. Schools may choose to provide additional funds to OASL by selecting the optional Bronze, Silver, or Gold membership levels.

Thank you for updating your membership by October 31st, 2020.
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New Partnership With Tonic Studios!

Did you enjoy our summer workshops t-shirts? Have you always wanted to rep OASL and look stylish at the same time? We have you covered! OASL will be launching the first ever online store hosted by Ohio’s own Tonic Studios! OASL will be selling exclusively designed graphic t-shirts, half zips, hats, hoodies and even socks. We will even be using our new online store to offer special promotions when you register and participate in our events!

The OASL store will officially launch mid October. If you have any suggestions on what we should stock in our store please reach out to Anthony.paletta@oasl-oh.org. Please stay tuned to our social media pages for the latest information about the store launch and the merch that will be sold!

If you want to be one of the first to receive the store's discount code - remember to register for our fall events to received exclusive promo codes for our store launch!

New Executive Board Members!

OASL would like to welcome it's two newest Executive Board members! This past March, the OASL membership voted remotely to restructure the Executive Board to include two individuals from outside the student advising world to sit on the board. With a more diverse team and perspectives, OASL can strengthen it's immediate membership and finances, while also ensuring long term success for the organization. OASL would like to welcome Rick Bannister and Niro Wimalasena back to OASL (they were both delegates during their high school years), and thank them for agreeing to volunteer and serve our organization! We look forward to the direction they will help move our organization!

Rick Bannister, Executive Board Member, Columbus, Ohio

Rick Bannister is a 46 year resident of Westerville. He and his wife Diane began dating while seniors at Westerville South High School and continued dating through their years at Ohio State. They have 4 daughters, 3 of whom are now college graduates, and their gift, Riley will be a junior at Westerville South this year.

While at Westerville South as a student, Rick served as Student Council Treasurer, President, and then Senior Class President. Rick attended OASC camp in the summers of 1980 and 81, and led a delegation from Westerville to the OASC spring conference in Kent, Ohio in the spring of 1981. Westerville submitted a bid to host the 1982 conference and their bid was accepted!

Now in his 18th season, Rick serves as the volunteer Public Address Announcer for Westerville South football as well as boys and girls basketball. He is also in his 10 th year as the PA Announcer for Ohio State University’s women’s softball team and has announced men’s and women’s soccer, wrestling, volleyball, and hockey for the Buckeyes over the years. Rick has announced more than 1,000 athletic and special events in Westerville, for Otterbein University, and for the Ohio State Buckeyes.

In 2012 Rick was inducted into the Westerville South Alumni Hall of Fame and the Westerville Board of Education created a Community Service Award in his name. In 2016 Rick was honored as the Westerville Sunrise Rotary Community Service Award Winner.

In January of 2017 Rick launched a 501(c)(3) charity called neighborhood bridges, which has directly impacted more than 103,000 students/families in need and serves 26 communities in Ohio and Alabama. Prior to launching neighborhood bridges Rick served as the Chief Operating Officer at the Ohio State Bar Association for 17 years.

In 2018 Rick was inducted into the Westerville South Athletic Hall of Fame and became the only person from Westerville or Westerville South High School to be inducted into the Student, Alumni, and Athletic Hall of Fame.

In September of 2019 Rick was recognized by the Columbus Dispatch as one of Central Ohio’s 2019 Everyday Heroes. In February of 2020, Rick was notified by the City of Westerville that he will be named the 10th Champion of Westerville. This ceremony has been postponed until the fall due to COVID-19.

Niro Wimalasena, Executive Board Member, Madiera, Ohio

Niro Wimalasena is a recently promoted Director of Research & Development (R&D) at The Procter & Gamble Company (P&G). Effective November 1, 2020, Niro will assume global responsibility for Wipes and Lotion (Pampers and Luvs brands) material development within P&G's Baby Care Global Material Development & Supply Organization (GMDSO). Niro has worked full-time at P&G since September 2012 after completing three summer internships (2009-2011) during his undergraduate university career. Until the recent announcement of his advancement, Niro has been responsible for leading nonwoven development for Always Discreet (Adult Incontinence) and Always Infinity (menstrual pads) within P&G's Feminine Care business unit for the past four years (2016-2020).

Prior to joining P&G, Niro attended Case Western Reserve University (CWRU), where he graduated cum laude in May 2012 with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering with a minor in Economics. During his time at CWRU, Niro was a four-year member of the Men's Varsity Soccer team where he still holds the school record for number of career games started (76). Niro was the first player in program history to be named National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-American, NSCAA Collegiate Scholar All-American and Capital One Academic All-American. He was a four-time All-University Athletic Association (UAA) selection, three-time UAA All-Academic selection and two-year captain. Outside of athletics, Niro joined the Zeta chapter of Delta Tau Delta fraternity in January 2009 where he served on the executive board for two years (2010-2011) and also served on the executive board for CWRU's Relay for Life from 2010-2012.

Niro is a proud alumnus and product of the programming offered by Ohio Association of Student Leaders. After attending multiple events and workshops from October 2005 - July 2008 during his time at William Mason High School, Niro joined the organization's adult staff in Summer 2013 and has been helping staff OASL's summer workshops ever since. In 2019, Niro was presented with the OASL Award of Merit, the organization's highest honor, at the 66th Annual State Conference at Celina High School for his contributions to the organization over the past decade. Niro joins Rick Bannister as the first appointed members of the OASL Executive Board after the recent vote to amend the Executive Board structure outlined in the OASL Constitution in May 2020.

Niro currently resides in Madeira, OH with his wife, Dana, and their three dogs (Jax, Ringo, and Zoe).


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Announcing OASL's 2021 State Conference Host: Medina High School