How do THEY lead?


UChicago Leader Profiles

2017 Student Leadership Institute

Peer Facilitators Edition


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Name: Sophia Chen  

Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia

Major/Program of Study: Economics and Computer Science Major, Visual Arts Minor

Involvement on Campus: Committee on Academics in the College, Center for College Student Success Advisory Board, Trott Business Program / UCIB: Financial Markets


What leadership skill has been most helpful to you in your formal role(s) on campus?

I could not have accomplished much without clear and effective two-way communication. I believe that this is important because leaders can better share vision, strategy, progress, and setbacks. It also allows them to receive feedback for improvement and leads to increased group unity and productivity.

What can a UChicago student do to grow as a leader during their time on campus?

UChicago offers many opportunities for leadership development. Extracurricular activities are a good place to practice what one has learned. The Center of Leadership and Involvement also hosts several events throughout the academic year focusing on different components of leadership. Lastly, StrengthsQuest can be further leveraged. This can start by understanding one’s strengths and advance to looking though the different traits to find ones to improve.

What have you gained as a result of being a leader at UChicago?

My experiences as a leader at UChicago have allowed me to become more open-minded, to better understand my strengths and weakness, and to be more comfortable taking initiative and engaging teammates.


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Name: Madeleine Hazen

Major/Program of Study: Political Science Major, Astrophysics Minor

Involvement on Campus: Chief Operations Officer for Kappa Alpha Theta, Head of Logistics for the "Underground Collective", Women in Business, Emerging Minds Project Participant, past flute player in Symphonic Band


In what ways have you seen your leadership skills develop? 

I have most developed in the area of seeking others opinions. It is easy to see one's own logic, but I think that the act of seriously considering others input is so necessary for effective leadership. This is an area I have definitely developed in during college. 

What can a UChicago student do to grow as a leader during their time on campus?

I think the best thing they can do is put themselves in situations where they have to collaborate with people with different leadership styles and greater expertise. This campus has the ability to make people feel like they always need to be the best or be "in charge" when in reality sometimes different approaches just work better depending on the situation. Learn from others! It lets others know that you care and increases your clout and knowledge overall. 

Favorite Quote Related to Leadership:

"Always be more than you appear and never appear to be more than you are" - Angela Merkel 



Name: Winnie Lui

Hometown: Chicago, Illinois

Major/Program of Study: Economics

Involvement on Campus: Center for College Student Success Advisory Board Chair, Women in Business, Smart Woman Securities Analyst 


What does leadership mean to you?

Leadership means listening to other people's ideas and being able to encourage collaboration between others. It means having the confidence to inspire others toward a common vision and foster a spirit of community. It's about highlighting talents of team members, welcoming diverse perspectives, and motivating people to reach their goals.

When did you first identify yourself as a leader?

I first identified myself as a leader when I was a summer camp counselor in high school because all of the kids turned to me for help when they didn’t know how to resolve a conflict or had trouble completing a task. It was at that moment that I knew I had to step to help them solve their issues and be there for those kids because they looked up to me and saw me as a role model. I became more aware of my words and actions and tried to help out in any way possible.

In what ways have you seen your leadership skills develop? 

When I was a freshman, I was a participant in SLI. Through SLI's leadership workshops, I saw a great improvement in my leadership skills and self-confidence since I am more comfortable stepping out of my comfort zone now and can effectively interact with others. I received many opportunities to put myself out there and present my ideas in front of large audiences. As a result, I developed better public speaking and communication skills. With SLI's support, I gained confidence in my abilities to create change in the world, work in a team to solve significant issues, and influence others to be the best that they can be. I became better at motivating my peers and applying what I have learned to the world so that we could all make a difference to the community.


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Name: Siobhan O'Carroll

Hometown: Seattle, Washington

Major/Program of Study: Law, Letters, & Society and History

Involvement on Campus: Social Chair for the Catholic Student Association and Student Coordinator for Taking the Next Step


What does leadership mean to you?

Leadership first and foremost means knowing how to listen to and respect other people, and then acting to synthesize ideas and make hard decisions.

Favorite Quote Related to Leadership:

“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.” -Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

What can a UChicago student do to grow as a leader during their time on campus?

Engage at every opportunity – your house, your sports team, your favorite RSO. Notice what needs to be done, take on the responsibility, and leadership skills will follow naturally. 


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Name: John Schultz

Hometown: Powell, OH

Major/Program of Study: Political Science

Involvement on campus: Varsity pole-vaulter for The University of Chicago Track and Field team, Associate and Mentor for the Blue Chips Investment Club, Data Intern with the Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism, and Events Ambassador at the Institute of Politics


What does leadership mean to you?

To me, leadership is all about inclusiveness. Many people have brilliant ideas, but lack the confidence to speak out and describe them, especially in high performing and competitive groups. A great leader is someone who recognizes the strengths of others and encourages their participation.

Favorite quote related to leadership:

“Be kind. Be useful. Be Fearless.” – President Barack Obama

What can a UChicago student do to grow as a leader during their time on campus?

Get engaged in as many different opportunities as possible. From engaging with RSO’s like the Blue Chips and the Institute of Politics, to experiencing other various activities like joining the track team and studying abroad, I spent my first two years at UChicago exploring the many different opportunities that exist on campus. Each expanded my view and gave me a glimpse into the different worlds, career paths, and people that exist at our school. Everyone at UChicago has a unique story and skillset; learning that early on was instrumental, and allowed me to begin placing my confidence in other students and their ideas.