Friday, July 15, 2016

Heather White Speaks to High School Students at Environmental Summit

By: Emilee Rae Hibshman

Heather White is a leader in sustainability and an expert on environmental policy. Heather's first lecture was called "Communication 101", which taught about nonverbal and verbal communication, as well as how to present your content.

Heather White guides the students in an activity about communication.

Heather showed the students tricks that she learned from a TED talk about "power posing." The idea of power posing is to pick a pose that makes you feel confident or powerful, then stand in it for two minutes in private before an interview. She also showed the students how to sit properly for both an interview and a TV appearance!

Another speech that Heather gave was titled "Mentors: How to Find Them, How to be One, and How to Listen to your Inner Voice." She gave three main points to both find a mentor, and be one.

The first step was "Make your own mentors." Heather advised the students to introduce themselves to people, initiate a conversation, and ask for an informational interview. "The more people help you, the more people actually want to help you," Heather stated (when telling students to make sure to ask questions).

The second point Heather discussed was to "write down goals and create a road-map." But Heather also advised students to be open-minded and allow their goals to adjust and change with experiences.

Heather's final point was centered around being a mentor to others. "Share your story." Though it seems simple enough, she expressed that the people's stories you relied on helped you, so you could help someone else discover their goals by sharing. "The power is yours," she told the students.

Heather White also did a Q&A with Dr. John Wear and Jocelyn Lyle, where they all spoke about their own mentors and environmental experiences that helped them to shape their paths. All three were asked to share the best career advice they had ever received. Heather told students, "Take initiative. Enthusiasm and initiative count for so much."

Jocelyn Lyles and Heather White before speaking to the students.

"Get to know who you work with... establish a network," Jocelyn advised the group. She also shared the need for young women to not be intimidated by their strong female leaders. "Ask questions," she said.

Finally, Dr. Wear shared a message that was very simple. "You can learn a lot of the things you think that you can't learn to do." He explained further that just because you start out doing poorly at something doesn't mean that with practice you cannot get better at it.

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