On Tuesday, September 17, 28 SCCS Student Leadership Council (SLC) students and their staff mentors gathered to kick-off an exciting partnership between SCCS and Chick-fil-A, the Chick-fil-A Leader Academy, which partners nationally with over 31,000 high school students to develop leadership skills and encourage Impact Through Action. Over the course of the year, these student leaders will meet for seven Leader Labs to learn more about how to be a leader and they will accomplish three service projects to positively impact the community.

“We have always had leadership opportunities on campus but never a chance to train the students on how to be effective leaders,” shared Natalie Clapper, SLC Advisor and CFA Leadership Facilitator. “This is a great opportunity to challenge students to step up and step out of their comfort zones.”

SCCS is the first school that local partner Chick-fil-A Valencia has sponsored for this program in the Santa Clarita Valley. This local partnership gives the owner/operator an opportunity to invest in the next generation of leaders. 

“I’m most excited about the enthusiasm I’m seeing from the students. It shows there is a hunger for leadership training,” shared Tom Williams, Valencia Chick-fil-A Owner/Operator. “The best part about a local business partnering with a local school is that it gives us the opportunity to shape our community in the future and gives these students an expanded perspective and an opportunity to gain valuable leadership skills.”

During the kickoff, students enjoyed a Chick-fil-A meal and heard from Tom Williams. An ice breaker made them think as they considered various historical figures, innovators and cultural icons and how they have made a difference in their communities. Then they learned from the keynote video about being a servant leader.

“The focus of the whole program is to develop servant leaders,” continued Clapper. “The kick-off stressed replacing ‘I’ with ‘you’. In order to be a good leader, you first need to be a servant.”