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12th Annual Ignite Leadership Program Award Ceremony


Academics, General News, University News

Concordia celebrated its 12th Annual Ignite Leadership Award Ceremony last week. The award ceremony recognizes students and their growth during their time in the Ignite Leadership Program.

The program is a co-curricular and is offered to all undergraduate students through Concordia’s Center for Student Engagement. The Center for Student Engagement manages a vast array of extracurricular activities such as Study Abroad, Service-Learning, service trips, Student Activities, Comet’s Cupboard, and, of course, the Ignite Leadership Certificate Program.

According to Kimberly Newton, Assistant Director of Student Activities and Leadership at Concordia St. Paul, This program allows students to grow and develop by focusing on specific skills that we know employers are looking for. They become more self-aware, thoughtful, and socially just leaders through engaging in different workshops, panels, and experiences.” 

However, students must be prepared to put in the work to gain such valuable skillsets. While this may sound daunting to some, in reality, the work that is done through the Ignite Leadership Program is loaded with tons of fun memorable experiences. For example, each student must surpass the program’s ten competency areas: emotional intelligence, experiential learning, engaging diversity, self-awareness, collaboration, strategic decision-making, adaptability, innovation and creativity, civic responsibility, and the Changemaker Capstone.

“We purposely designed this curriculum so that each one connects with the others so that students really understand how these skills apply to their unique leadership style, gifts, and talents,” Newton explained. “They are also learning from one another, which is such an important learning experience.” 

With each of these unique competency areas comes tons of learning opportunities both as an individual and in a team setting. Students who decide to partake in the Ignite Leadership Certificate Program get to work hands-on through completing ten hours of any service experience they prefer and through partaking in a three-day retreat with their peers. The skills and experiences gained through completing the Ignite Program translates far beyond the scope of academia.

“Ignite brings together students from all across campus, from different backgrounds, and different levels of leadership experience,” Newton shared. “I believe it allows for the opportunity for students to get to know other students they may have never met. We believe it is important to understand another person’s lived experiences and to be a more thoughtful, well-rounded leader. Additionally, students can apply the skills they are learning in Ignite to their leadership experiences, jobs, internships, and more.”

Those interested in the Ignite Leadership Program can email Kimberly at [email protected] or check out their page at Comet’s Connection

Ignite Leadership Graduates of 2021: 

-Lindsey Bahr      

-Davina Bellinger

-Liam Raphael Alexis Boris

-Kayla Marie Brotzman

-Daniel Carter

-Bethany Elizabeth Dorschner 

-Angel Galaz 

-Cizon Hang 

-Lilian M. Hanson 

-Alicia Joswiak 

-Heenu Kamboj 

-Olivia Laube 

-Deyvon K. Long

-Veda Maharaj 

-Amber Martinez 

-Ash Marxhausen 

-Alexa Mertens 

-Bisharo Mohamed Mohamoud 

-Bethany Mrosko

-Alexys Olson 

-Ayan Omer 

-Hali Soukup 

-Nhadi Vang 

-Sairam Prakash Veerlapati 

-Benjamin Wadsworth 

-Zachary Wolfram 

For outstanding civil duty and service aimed at providing communities with supplementary service, especially during this COVID-19 pandemic, there is the MLK award. 

This year’s winners of the MLK award:

-Davaris Cheeks ‘23

-Alexis Stanley ‘21

The Community Brick Building Award is given to one student who has made significant contributions to charity through their hard work. 

This year’s winner of the Community Brick Building Award is: 

-Davina Srey

The nominees for 2021’s Outstanding Student Leader of the Year award: 

-Monica Lee 

-Bao Her 

-Abe Schwartz 

-Davina Srey 

-Alexis Stanley 

-Coral Van Muyden 

-Emily Woodhall 

-Zach Wolfram 

-Isabelle D’Burke 

-Faith Johnson 

-Megan Lucas 

-Payton Nutter 

-Rachel Tschida 

The winner of the 2021 Outstanding Student Leader of the Year is: 

-Zach Wolfram

2021’s Emerging Leader of the Year nominees: 

-Liam Boris 

-Davaris Cheeks 

-Hannah Clark 

-Sofia Dodge 

-Mackenzie Haydon 

-Clara Heislen 

-Justin Kohlman 

-Veda Maharaj 

The winners of the 2021 Emerging Leader Award: 

-Davaris Cheeks 

-Veda Maharaj 

2021’s Club Advisor of the Year nominees:

-Mike Bond (Black Athletes United)

-Beth Chambers (Criminal Justice and Sociology Club) 

-Kristin Conrad (Teachers of Tomorrow) 

Esther Vuong (Concordia Sisterhood of Empowerment) 

The winner of  2021’s Club Advisor of the Year is: 

-Esther Vuong (Concordia Sisterhood of Empowerment) 

2021’s Club Leader of the Year award nominees: 

-Davaris Cheeks

-Isabelle D’Burke 

-Sarah Golemme 

-Justin Kohlman 

-Maiyan Tapia 

The winner of the Club Leader award is:

-Sarah Golemme 

Let’s take a look at some other honorable winners from this year! 

2021 Presidents’ Civic Engagement Award winner: Mike Bond

2021 Presidents’ Student Leadership Award winner: Alexis Stanley


Thank you to all those who have passed through the Ignite Leadership program! Because of their hard work and dedication to providing excellent leadership and service, our community of Concordia St. Paul is even stronger.

Congratulations to all nominees, graduates, and winners of the 12th annual Ignite Leadership Certificate Program.