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Cadets Learn to Lead

Cadets at Northwest Missouri State University got a sneak peak of what it takes to be a leader from one of the country's top servicemen.
(MARYVILLE, Mo.) Cadets at Northwest Missouri State University got a sneak peak of what it takes to be a leader from one of country's top servicemen.

"There's always a hesitancy to step forward and take responsibility," stated Brigadier General Christopher Hughes.

Northwest Missouri State University held its annual leadership symposium for cadets to encourage them to step out and take chances.

Hughes was this year's keynote speaker. He stressed the importance of being confident.

"In order to be able to step out of the box and do things and be innovative, you've got to understand the confines of the box. Understanding the basics and the rules gives you the ability to see beyond those rules and do something innovative," added Hughes.

He added all leaders have three similar traits: education, training and experience. Hughes wants all young adults to know and learn the difference between taking a risk and a gamble.

"That's what we have to make sure we tell young officers when we're training is I want you to take risk and I want you to be innovative but I want you to be a creative thinker and figure out how to do that," said Hughes.

Chelsey Clark, a junior and cadet at the university, says listening to Hughes lecture gave her a new perspective on life and how to lead others.

"As a leader, you definitely can't do everything all by yourself. You have to rely on other people in order to get the mission accomplished," stated Clark.

Clark says the symposium also taught her a little bit more about herself and learning to trust others. The purpose of the lecture was to discuss Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts with alumni who have served and officers.

"As a leader you can't lead anyone without the trust of your people and then they have to trust you that you know what you're doing and then you can actually get it done," said Clark.

Hughes is a Northwest alumnus. He is currently the deputy commanding general of the U.S. Army Combined Arms Center-Leader Development and Education and the Deputy Commandment at the General Staff College.

Northwest offers a range of degree and certification programs that benefit military students.


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