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Perceived Leadership Skills Gained Through Participation of SOUL and Appol Corps Programs

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TITLE: Perceived Leadership Skills Gained Through Participation of SOUL and Appol Corps Programs
 
RESEARCHER: Crystal Ford, Jayne Greene, and Kayla Richardson
Appalachian State University
Unpublished research paper: May 2013

OBJECTIVE
The purpose of the study was to examine the impact of student participation at Appalachian State University (Appalachian) in Student Orientation Undergraduate Leaders (SOUL) and Appol Corps on leadership skill development.

METHODOLOGY
SOUL student leaders (8 men and 12 women: 83% response rate)were surveyed following summer orientation and Appol Corps student leaders (39 men and 71 women; 53% response rate) were surveyed at the end of welcome week. A focus group was held for students participating in SOUL and another for students participating in Appol Corps. Additionally a survey and focus group was done with a control group of students (8 men and three women) who were not affiliated with SOUL or Appol Corps. Respondents completed the Leadership Practices Inventory.

KEY FINDINGS
SOUL participants showed higher on all five leadership practices than the control group, and three of these reached statistical significance (Inspire, Enable and Encourage). Likewise, those involved in Appol Corps reported higher frequencies on all five leadership practices than the control group, and all of these were statistically significant. The authors also found that “student participants in both SOUL and Appol Corps focus groups were found to be more engaging in dialogue and were able to articulate their variety of leadership skills more clearly; whereas, student participants in the control group provided limited responses to the questions” (p. 17).


 

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