3 Leadership Analogies that can come from the Solar Eclipse

3 Leadership Analogies that can come from the Solar Eclipse

On Monday, August 21, 2017 the United States will experience a total solar eclipse. Oregon has the special opportunity to be in the path of totality. From Newport to Ontario, Oregonians will be able to take part in what is being called a celestial event.

From this remarkable experience, as leaders, here are a few leadership analogies you can pull from the 2017 Solar Eclipse.

  1. Don’t let the shadow of your past eclipse the brightness of your future.

It’s unfair to judge a person by their past—but as leaders, our pasts are sometimes put in the spotlight. How can we move forward if we are always linked to our past? First, you learn from your past, and second, you move forward.  Successful individuals like Oprah Winfrey, J.K. Rowling, Mark Cuban, and Sir James Dyson all came from challenging backgrounds. While our backgrounds may be filled with mistakes or with the circumstances we were born into, our futures are unwritten.

  1. Even the moon—as little as it—can hide the sun for even a moment.

Did you know that the sun’s diameter is about 400 times larger than the moon? But around 2 times each calendar year, the moon blocks the sun, leaving a shadow on earth. As leaders, our challenges can seem as large as the sun, but even every now and again, your power can overcome the power those challenges bring.

  1. The sun always comes again.

Each year, high school can become a little more challenging. In our schools today, students of all kinds are struggling to deal with the stress that comes from academics, athletics, and activities. During a total eclipse, the moon shields the sun and causes about two minutes of darkness. But, at the end of that darkness the sun comes out again. When looking for a positive light in your life, try out mindfulness. Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one’s attention to experiences occurring in the present moment. This can be done through meditation and journaling.

If you have the chance to experience the solar eclipse, write down your experience and share it with us!

Seizing The Leadership Moment…

Seizing The Leadership Moment…

When leaders fail to seize the moment, they undermine their leadership. What prevents you from seizing your opportunity to lead?

By Saffron Cooper, OASC Midwest Rep. | When I think of the opportunities (as a leader, student, and person) I’ve missed in my life, I realize that nearly every time, it was due to fear of failure and the shame associated with it. Society drills into our brains that failure is bad and should be avoided at all costs, because it means you’re doing something wrong. I’ve come to the conclusion recently that failure really isn’t all that bad. It’s not something to get stuck in, but it is something to embrace and learn from. I feel that I’ve learned the most from the failures and struggles in my life, and let them motivate me to accomplish my goals. Success wouldn’t be so special without downfalls, right? Every person considered successful has seen failure, just like us. J.K. Rowling was rejected by multiple publishing companies, Walt Disney was allegedly turned down hundreds of times before he got financing for Disneyland, and Van Gogh only sold one painting in his lifetime. But they kept writing, kept trying, and kept painting, because they believed in what they were doing regardless of being considered a ‘failure’ at some point. It’s time to embrace the fact that failure isn’t the opposite of success, it’s a part of it.

by Madisyn Montgomery, OASC State President | Throughout my leadership experience, I’d discovered I grow insecure or unsure about leading when I’m not familiar with the project my team is heading. For example, in the first grade a few of my friends asked me to lead an art club because they wanted to learn how to draw a flower the way I could. I was nervous and felt incapable to teach others something I barely knew how to do myself. They were only doodles and balls of scribbles with outward lines that somehow managed to look impressive. I denied the idea and refrained from drawing another flower again.

Later in middle school, I joined student council with some of my close friends. They encouraged me to lead the decorating team for our winter dance. Although middle school dances are far from intimidating, I proceeded to feel unqualified to head the committee when I’d never even been to a dance before, let alone one where all of my peers would be there to judge my work. This is the way I would think. Although, these hesitations in my leadership journey did not inhibit my opportunity to lead in other ways, such as card making for retirement homes during Christmas or reading chapter books to kindergarteners. I found alternate ways to express my passion for leadership.

It wan’t until the summer of my freshman year where I attended my first OASC camp that I realized I could lead in a new way. There, I was not only challenged to become a greater leader but I was empowered with the development of my leadership voice. By exploring and discovering my style of leadership, I grew confident in taking risks to lead even when I didn’t feel completely comfortable. This is because I knew my excitement for the project and trust in my team would shine through any hesitations, enabling me to seize any chance to lead. With the help of OASC, I’ve only grown more willing to embrace each leadership opportunity and I can’t wait to see what opportunities lie ahead.


With Kindness,




Play It Safe or Seize The Moment

Play It Safe or Seize The Moment

Ben Bowman, OASC Board Member

I remember it vividly: it was the Tualatin City Little League Championship game. The hot stadium lights were shining brightly on the baseball field at Jurgens Park; the bleachers were packed — with fans, reporters, and scouts from the big leagues.

 In retrospect, the light may have been coming from the sun. And there might have just been a couple dozen parents and grandparents watching. But in the mind of a 12 year old, there’s not much of a difference. Let me take you there:

After five and a half innings, the game is tied. It’s the bottom of last inning, the score is zero to zero, and I’m the first batter up. I’m scared. More than scared. I can barely work up the courage to walk out of the dugout. I’m not the worst baseball player, but I’m far from the best. I don’t have a much confidence (an uncommon affliction for a middle schooler), and this is one of the biggest moments of my life. The pressure is weighing on me.

I step into the batter’s box, bend my knees, and I clench the bat until my knuckles turn white. I pretend like I’m really focusing on the pitcher and getting ready to hit the ball — but in my heart I know there’s no way I’m swinging. I’m just not the guy who wins the big game.

The pitcher winds up, and the first pitch is a ball. Good news! It’s literally impossible for me to strike out on three pitches now. Then, the pitcher winds up for a second time, and this time he throws the ball hard and it’s coming right at me; my “fight or flight” instincts kick in and I dive backwards into the dirt, narrowly avoiding what might have been a life-threatening injury. This led to a moment I’m not proud of: next thing I knew, I’m literally covered in dirt, and tears are streaming down my face. I’m crying — hard — and the ball didn’t even hit me. I was literally so overwhelmed that I lost it and couldn’t regain my composure.

On the bright side…that was ball two, and I’m still alive. At this point, the third base coach walks over and gives me some truly inspirational advice: “Do not swing.”

And the third base coach is my dad.

Your wish is my command. Two pitches later, I’m on first base. Holy cow I made it on base. Everything that happened in the ensuing moments happened very quickly — two outs and two stolen bases later, I’m on third base with the game on the line. I’m the winning run.

After a couple of pitches, the pitcher winds up and throws a loose ball — it’s in the dirt and it gets past the catcher. Immediately, it feels like everything is moving in slow motion. I take two quick steps toward home plate and I stop.

Here’s the thing: this is a moment. The gravity of it all hits my still-developing twelve-year-old brain. I have a choice to make: play it safe, like I did when I was at bat, like I did all season — or take a risk. Give it a shot. Seize the moment.

I go for it. I put my head down and run as fast as I ever had toward home plate. I slide, and I look up at the umpire.


I am 25-years-old today, and I still can’t help but smile when I think about that game. It was an important lesson on self-confidence, risk-taking, and seizing the moment. There’s nothing worse than self-inflicted limitations; nobody is “the type of person who wins the big game” — until they do. Seizing the moment is really just about summoning the confidence to take a risk and doing it. Because if you don’t, you might still be standing on third base when the game ends.