SLP Week 2018: Surviving the week

Jaylen Harris | Staff Writer

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SLP applicants daily photo challenge submissions | Arleena Allen & Tangela Wilhite

Did you face your fears and survive the week? Only the strongest applicants made it to the end of this year’s Fear Factor-themed SLP week.

The annual SLP Week, dedicated to students interested in joining the Greer Dawson Wilson Student Leadership Training Program, gives students a glimpse of what student leaders do daily.

Applicants were easily spotted throughout the week as they roamed the campus dressed in professional attire. Students participated in a variety of photo challenges, each trademarked with the caption #SLPWeek2018 on Instagram and Twitter.

Throughout the week, applicants found themselves learning how to manage their time, responsibilities and classes, while also familiarizing themselves with the ins and outs of the leadership program and Hampton University.

“Waking up at 5AM definitely taught me how to prepare for my day to get started and keep my mind going at times when I’m usually sleep,” said Eric Coates, a first-year Sociology major from Philadelphia, Pa.

Applicants also had their share of fun through a variety of entertaining events such as a scavenger hunt, SLP meet-and-greet, and campus-wide events including a ballroom party and a student favorite: “Celebrity Wannabe.”

“Celebrity Wannabe” allowed applicants to impersonate celebrities by performing their songs, raps, performing skits from famous movies and making guest appearances. The show was filled with costumes and choreography, all highlighting the mannerisms of the “celebrities.”

Students who did not perform had the opportunity to work behind the scenes.

The opening performance featured Blockboy JB and Drake with a mob of guys behind them, performing “Look Alive,” hitting the popular “Shoot” dance across the stage.

The show ended with students performing the Billboard hit “Walk It Talk It” by Migos. Their performance kept the essence of the actual music video, thanks to a soul train line, shades and afros.

“Performing as one of the Migos definitely brought me out of my comfort zone. Doing the worm, I felt like I was a part of the actual music video and I would definitely do it all over again,” said Gabriel Sanders, a first-year Sports Management major from Atlanta, Ga.

Friday night, SLP hosted a ballroom party with applicants and their friends in full attendance. An entry fee of two canned goods were required; the food was later donated to a local shelter. Students had a great time after a week of working hard.

After the party many applicants returned to their dorms to study for the SLP exam on Saturday. Following days of preparation and studying, applicants were relieved when they completed the week.

Pass or fail, applicants enjoyed their Fear Factor-themed week and are anxiously waiting to hear if they move on to the final process of becoming a member of the Student Leadership Program.

SLP connects with the community

Nylah Powell | Staff Writer

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Mr. and Mrs. Keys with their children at the community dinner. | Courtesy of Nylah Powell

On Nov. 17, the Greer Dawson Wilson Student Leadership Program hosted a community Thanksgiving dinner for families in the Hampton area.

They called local churches, shelters, and social services to reach out and see who they could get involved. Members met each family upon entrance and served the families a traditional Thanksgiving dinner.

Ham, turkey, stuffing, macaroni and cheese, greens and corn bread were some of the dishes served.

SLP started hosting this community dinner a few years ago when one of the co-facilitators, Andrew Williams, came up with the idea.

According to Student Activities director Anzell Harrell, “He started this because he had a big heart. He felt that it was good for Hampton’s SLP to give back to the community and to help other people who are less fortunate.”

Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate and give thanks for the things we have in the world. Not everyone is as fortunate to have what others do.

At Hampton, these things do not go unnoticed. For this reason, SLP continues to give back to the community.

Senior political science major Whitley Pannell said, “It’s a very rewarding experience to see the smiles on everybody’s faces and to see everyone having a good time.”

There were about five members in the program when it first started, and now it’s growing. Many of the preparations have stayed the same throughout the years and are executed smoothly. However, event coordinators plan to make the project even greater in the future.

“We’re looking to do something a little different with it next year, and that’s maybe carrying it to a shelter where people are a little more comfortable in their element,” said Harrell. “We’re just going to throw some ideas at the students so they can figure out how they would like to do it and how they would like to be a part of it.”

Many of the families attending came from Sixth Mount Zion Baptist church.

“Deacon Colton Ashby was contacted and he told the church about the event,” said member Terry Keys.

Hampton has collaborated with Sixth Mount Zion on many occasion, for many different purposes. One way in which HU helps out the church is Wednesday night tutoring with the children, but it doesn’t stop there.

Pannell reflected, “Quite frankly, it’s nothing to take a little bit of time out of your day to do something … to help somebody else and put a smile on someone’s face.”

While there were some familiar faces at this year’s community dinner, there were new faces as well. “This was our first time at this dinner. The food was awesome! I didn’t know we could bring more people, and I would have brought more with me,” Sixth Mount Zion member Michelle Herman said.

The ultimate goal is to let those who are less fortunate know that they are not alone and get more community members involved over time. SLP plans to spread the word and continue the growth of this program.