Citizen Leader Highlight of the Month

The Office of Leadership and Civic Engagement has launched a new recognition program: Citizen Leader of the Month. These students have been selected as a UNCG Citizen Leader based on the following requirements:

  1. They live out our definition of what it means to be a citizen leader.

  2. They exhibit 1 or more of our 8 competencies of a UNCG leader.

  3. They were nominated by a UNCG staff member.

  4. They have at least a 3.0 cumulative GPA.

  5. They are involved with at least one organization or office at UNCG.


March Winner: Lex Lee

Major: Social Work Major / Psychology Minor

Year: Junior

Involvement: Peer Academic Leader (PAL) Captain, Peer Leadership Educator (PLE), InterVarsity Christian Fellowship Emcee, and UNCG College of Visual and Performing Arts Dean’s Office Receptionist

Why Lex is a Citizen Leader

Lex lives out our definition of citizen leadership by constantly looking for ways to help others, whether it be with an assignment or through the struggles of life. Throughout her various on and off campus roles, she is always advocating for diversity and its importance. Her experience with diverse populations and cultures has opened her eyes to the differences between various groups, and how, as a community, we all can appreciate our differences to reach a common goal.

How She Demonstrates our Core Competencies of a UNCG Leader

She strives to embody all 8 competencies of a UNCG Leader. She believed her strongest three are self-awareness, task management and effective communication.

She demonstrates self-awareness through daily self-reflection. This allows her to become more aware of how and why she responds in different situations. She believes by doing so, she is also able to help others become more self-aware as well.

Task management
She demonstrates task management by prioritizing and fully understand her tasks prior to completing them. Before beginning a task, she ensures she has all of the resources she needs, while also keeping in mind other tasks to be completed in the same time frame. One thing that helps her with task management is keeping a planner. She writes down everything she needs to do in her planner and references it daily.

Effective communication
She demonstrates effective communication in many ways. Strives to listen and understand what someone is saying, rather than to simply respond. With the skill of active listening, she also makes certain she knows her audiences and what mode of communication they will best receive communication from.

Fun Facts

She is very passionate about mental health, and LOVES a good joke. She is published in the Spring 2018 Minerva Research Magazine and received Honorable Mention at the Undergraduate Research Expo (Spring 2018). Lastly, she is leading a breakout session at the LINC Conference! More info for this conference can be found here.

February Winners: Akecicia Steward & Calyssa Ponder

Major: Akecicia– Media Studies Major/ Theatre, African American Diaspora Studies Minors; Calyssa– Psychology/Sociology

Year: Akecicia– Senior; Calyssa– Junior

Involvement: Akecicia– Catalyst, Vietnamese Student Association, Advocacy for Access, Residence and Housing Association, SID Ambassador, SpartanLink, G.L.O.W dance team and Gold Leadership Challenge – Reading Connections; Calyssa– Catalyst, NBS/NBS Gospel Choir, Peer Academic Leader, TeamQuest, Blair Wisco PTSD Lab, Girls Reaching Out

Why Akecicia & Calyssa are Citizen Leaders

Akecicia and Calyssa are February’s Citizen Leaders of the Month because, together, they strive to be a catalyst for change. These students serve as OLCE’s Catalyst Leaders for the office’s new Catalyst program. Together, these students live out their values by serving community partners, leading with integrity, and working toward making the difference they hope to see in their communities.

How They Demonstrate our Core Competencies of a UNCG Leader

Akecicia and Calyssa both demonstrate our core competencies of a UNCG leader through effective communication and self-awareness. Beyond that, they support one another by contributing their individual strengths. While Akecicia brings relationship group development and community engagement, Calyssa brings creative visioning and intercultural knowledge. The Catalyst Leaders bring their strengths together to serve as a strong unit when collaborating with other students and community partners.

If you are interested in joining Akecicia and Calyssa in serving our community, please check out the new Catalyst program here:


January Winner: Oluwatamilore (Tammy) Ogunkale

Major: Computer Science, Pre-Med

Year: Junior

Involvements: Gold Leadership Challenge- Big Brother Big Sister of the Central PiedmontAfrican Student Union, & Articulate Poetry Club

Why Oluwatamilore is a Citizen Leader

Oluwatamilore is January’s Citizen Leader of the month because she involves herself in numerous volunteer opportunities in the community. She believes in leadership through service, so she tries to give back to the community as much as she can. By going through all three levels of the Leadership Challenge, she says she has been able to grow her leadership skills, which in turn makes her a better citizen leader. By being informed, she is able to answer questions that people have regarding civic duties, or she refers them to the Office of Leadership and Civic Engagement. Additionally, she is always open to work with anyone to achieve a common goal.

How She Demonstrates our Core Competencies of a UNCG Leader

Community engagement

She has been involved in a number of community service opportunities during her time here at UNCG. They include the Spartan Open Pantry, Habitat for Humanity, and currently, Big Brother Big Sister of the Central Piedmont. She says working for these organizations has further opened her eyes to the needs of the community, and makes her want to contribute more time and effort to making it a better place.

Task Management

Additionally, she says she has been able to successfully balance school work with other extracurricular activities while being a full-time student. She works for our office, Office of Leadership and Civic Engagement, and her job requirements have made her learn how to prioritize and multi task. Between all of her daily activities, she has learned how to use her planner, Google calendar, and other apps on her phone to help accomplish her tasks. It is important to her that she always completes tasks given to her to the best of her abilities.


October Winner: Savanna Thomas

Major: Community and Therapeutic Recreation

Minor: American Sign Language

Year: Junior

Involvements: Director/Founder of Camp Kesem, Past Student Reflection Leader for Honors Colloquium, Undergraduate Assistant for Community Engagement, Honors student , & Out of School Time Coordinator for the city of Greensboro

Why Savanna is a Citizen Leader

Savanna is October’s Citizen Leader of the month because of her dedication to serving her community. Through Camp Kesem, she is able to work with a team of individuals who address needs in the Greensboro community by spending several hours each week supporting children through and beyond their parent/guardian’s experience with cancer.

Through our Office of Leadership and Civic Engagement, she assisted with the planning, implementation, and evaluation of service trips, and days of service. Currently, she serves as the Out of School Time Coordinator for the city of Greensboro, which has allowed her to create effective change in the greater community by serving Greensboro’s youth on a broader scale.

How She Demonstrates our Core Competencies of a UNCG Leader

Relationship/Group Development

Through her role as a Camp Director for Camp Kesem, she is a part of a community of passionate individuals including student leaders, families affected by cancer, Greensboro citizens, and community contacts. By working together with local hospitals and support groups, Camp Kesem is able to support deserving children.

Creative Visioning and Goal Setting

With the Honors College and the Center for New North Carolinians, she filled a need in the community through her role as a Student Reflection Leader. Her idea for creating sustainable programming will help ensure their students and the children they work with will benefit from the experience. She believes that the first step in problem solving is connecting with people who wish to see the same change.