May 02, 2012
Finding his niche and expanding on it was the primary focus of Donovan Newman, head boy at Aquinas College. Although academics are important to the graduating senior (he has a 3.23 grade point average), he also values excelling in other areas of his life, which is why he is involved in other activities like basketball, baseball and soccer. He believes life is more than just about how many books one can read, or how many exams a person can pass. He said it is also about the friends and connections a person makes along the way.
Q. What do you think made you stand out to be head boy of your school?
A. I think my well-roundedness and my personality really made me stand out. I have always been active in sports and I have done well academically, so I guess I showed my teachers that I can balance different things in my life. I am also a person my peers like to speak to, so I guess I am someone peers look up to as well.
Q. What is the most difficult part of your job as head boy?
A. It is not as stressful as one would think but if I had to say what the most difficult thing is, I think it would have to be time management and staying on top of everything. Being head boy is about sacrificing your time and deciding often what is more important to do. I am really involved in my school and I am involved in my academics too, so making time to be there for my peers as well as representing my school has to be at the forefront as well. It's not hard, but it is interesting.
Q. What do you enjoy the most about your position?
A. I think it would be having more responsibility and representing my school. Having my peers look up to me is nice, but feeling responsible and part of a team is good too. Being in sports and representing the school in this capacity is good, but being head boy and being in a leadership role is a different kind of responsibility that I have enjoyed. It's also invaluable to me the people you can meet in this position, and how you can use these connections later in life.
Q. What does it mean to be a leader to you?
A. Being a leader is more than just about having power to me. It is about representing those you are in charge of, and taking the blame when something isn't right even if it is not your fault. Being a leader is showing that you are responsible no matter if things are going well or going badly. Always being accountable and ready for whatever occurs is also a part of being a leader. It's not a role to take lightly, but it is worthwhile when things go well and you are able to accomplish something you never could before.
Q. What advice would you give to students about leadership?
A. Being well-rounded in your work and in extracurricular activities helps. Being respectful and aiming to do more in all that you do is also a plus, but I think the chief thing to do is always have a mindset to lead and not follow. Always be willing to make your own decisions and reasons why something is the way it is and how to make it better, this is also a good mindset to have. I think it all starts with how you think and then how you act. Being consistent in your behavior is also important.
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