Celebrating student leaders is a powerful expression of gratitude and recognition for their unwavering dedication, passion, and drive in making a difference within your school, community, and the world. Their achievements serve as a source of inspiration and hope, not just for their peers but for all of us.
Here are some ideas to show your student leaders that their efforts and impact are valued and appreciated:
Elevate their stories
Share student leader stories. Tell us about an outstanding student leader in your school, what makes them exceptional, and how they have contributed to your school and your community. We’ll feature them on the National Student Leadership Map and social media accounts.
Celebrate their accomplishments
Send a student leader an e-card. Express your gratitude for their exceptional leadership this year by sending your student leaders an NSLW e-card with a personalized message!
Student Leader Appreciation Event. Recognize all student leaders who are involved in any leadership in your school; clubs, teams, etc. Schedule an awards ceremony, banquet, luncheon, or breakfast, and invite your principal, superintendent, school board, and even local elected officials or local celebrities to honor your students and those who support them.
Involve your school
Morning announcements. Make a school-wide announcement about NSLW and the importance of student leadership for making positive change. Consider featuring one or more of your student leaders each day of NSLW.
Student newspaper. Collaborate with a school publication to publish an article that publicizes NSLW and celebrates the accomplishments of your student leaders.
Alumni event. Invite program alumni to address your group, focusing on the things they learned from being involved as student leaders in middle level or high school that they find useful now in their careers.
Host an NSLW assembly. A successful National Student Leadership Week (NSLW) assembly is a great launching pad for an engaging and exciting celebration. Your assembly can communicate the goals and spirit of NSLW and motivate the entire student body and staff to join forces in service with you and student leaders. Here’s a checklist to help you plan and hold a meaningful NSLW assembly.
Student poll. Create and distribute a poll asking the student body the most important problem facing the community and seek their suggestions to solve it. Based on the results, draft a proposal for a year-long student-led volunteer project addressing the most popular issue.
Class competitions. Host competitions to collect donations or raise charitable funds, with the winning class earning a special treat.
School media coverage. Plan NSLW event coverage in the school newspaper, yearbook, and school social media posts. Mix inspirational quotes with activity posts/tweets. Our social media page provides image assets you can save and use on your social media channels. Make sure you include #NSLW23 in each post!
Leadership wall. Create a “wall of leadership” where student leaders begin posting their acts of leadership and challenge their fellow students to do the same.
Involve your community
Community leader meet-and-greet. Invite your superintendent, local mayor, city council, or state representative to have a luncheon or meet-and-greet with your student leaders. Talk about the importance of student leadership within your community.
Mayoral proclamation. Ask your Mayor for an NSLW proclamation to celebrate the student leaders in your community. Here’s a sample proclamation to share with your mayor’s office.
Host local elected officials. Customize this sample invitation to send to your state senator or state representative and ask if they will participate in your NSLW celebration.
Newspaper features. Share student stories with your local newspaper and ask if they will publish one each day of NSLW to honor and celebrate your student leaders.
Newspaper op-ed. Submit an op-ed to your local newspaper with a local angle about NSLW, perhaps asking for community support or participation in a student-led initiative.
Radio interview. Call your favorite radio station and ask if you can set up an interview with your student leaders in celebration of NSLW.
Local news. Contact your local TV station and ask if they will share information about your NSLW activities during their community news segment. They may even be interested in interviewing one of your student leaders.
Focus on service
Do a service project. When considering how your chapter or council will commemorate the week, get inspired by browsing more than 11,000 projects and activities in our data base completed by Honor Society chapters and student councils around the world.
Student mentorship. Send your student leaders to visit a younger group of students in your middle level or elementary school. The leadership of your students could inspire the next class to do great things!
Volunteer hour/donation matching. Work with a local company or organization and ask them to match the number of service hours or donations that your students are able to raise during NSLW!