IL-TSA Leadership Conference

Illinois TSA held its fall leadership conference on September 18, 2018 at the Four Rivers Environmental Education Center in Channahon. The two keynote speakers were Drs. Debra Korte and Kari Keating from the University of Illinois. The theme of the leadership conference was attitude and leadership. Plans are underway for the fall 2019 leadership conference, and when available, will be posted here.

Download for chapter use (created by National TSA)
Running an Effective Meeting(PowerPoint File)
Easy Parliamentary Procedures (MS Word File)
HS - Leadership Lesson 1
HS - Leadership Lesson 2
MS - Leadership Lesson 1
MS - Leadership Lesson 2

Pictures from past Leadership Conferences

Getting Ready
Human Knot
Human Knot
Human Knot
Team Building
Getting Ready to Climb


Below are student testimonials who attended IL TSA's Leadership Conferences.

I can take away from this conference how leadership is not only about one person doing all of the work. That it is okay for things to become crazy at times and that you shouldn’t make decisions alone, but as a team.

Leadership is a vital skill that must be utilized in various methods to solve a given issue, whether it be extremely simple or outrageously complex.

It is just as important to gain interest as it is to make ideas.

Try involving every member. Make them feel welcomed into the chapter so they can become a leader in the future. Help others after you’re gone.

My takeaway is that we should trust all of our community. “There are no saboteurs.” I can also take away the knowledge of the different types of problems and how to tackle those problems as a team.

What I believe we should take away from this is to always talk problems out with your group. Never try to make a hard decision on your own and listen to what other people have to say.

An important thing for leadership in TSA is to establish a personal connection with members to make them feel involved.

Some challenges are unforeseen and some problems don’t actually exist. There are no saboteurs. The main thing is to be ready for problems and to roll with them. Listen to everybody and experiment. Don’t take total control of a group. Just make it work as best as possible for everyone.  Don’t be aggressive or defensive. Be supportive.

I learned that you need to be encouraging and positive as a leader. You need to communicate with all the members in your group and work together as a team. Also, sometimes chaos is necessary in a group to accomplish things.

I learned that is is easier to lead a group after you have developed a relationship with them. It’s also really important to be interested and interesting, as well as positive and encouraging. The most important thing I’m taking away is the fact that management and leadership go hand in hand.

Always work from the mindset of the group. As a leader, you do not dictate. You and the group work together to solve problems. Communication is a complex system within an organization and it’s leaders. The best network must be created by the group and modified constantly. Leadership is about the group, not about you.

Leadership isn’t just about being in charge. It’s about how to work best to solve problems and communicate within a group.

I’ve learned the importance of creating an open, communicative environment to develop effective processes that move a group towards attaining their goals.

At the TSA leadership conference, I learned how to improve my communication and networking skills. The leadership presenter, Dr. Dave, gives an interesting and fast-paced lecture that is both fun and informative. He really taught me how to be a better leader, not only in TSA, but in life. He showed that making activities fun increased productivity. He also showed how to streamline communication. Lastly, he showed us how to deal with the problems we face every day.

What I will take away is that leadership is important. If you know how to be a leader, a lot is going to get done. As a leader, you should be positive and energetic with your group. Always let someone give an idea and tweak it. Get to know everyone. It will help you in a group. And last but not least, never quit on an idea.

To promote leadership, I learned that you should have good communication skills. You shouldn’t accuse someone of something just  because they don’t agree with you. Working together with people and trusting them makes things a lot easier.

I took so much away from this conference. The speaker was amazing and got everyone to talk. I learned that being a leader is about listening to the ideas of others. You can’t boss everyone around. You have to compromise and learn from each other.

I think the most important thing is communication because everyone needs to agree on what is going to be the outcome. I also think an important thing is to make whatever we do interesting (piano stairs). You should also keep an open mind and accept different ideas that are given to you.

My takeaways are to be: open-mind, strong-hearted, willing and able to listen, compromising, loyal, trustworthy, punctual, and respectful. People need to be able to feel safe and comfortable with you. They need to feel like they won’t be judged for putting themselves out there.

The takeaway from this conference is that in order to be a good leader, you must consider others opinions and make things fun. Also, you must get other people involved in the conversation or discussion. If you do not communicate and relay ideas to others in a group, you cannot get the best overall idea.

Sometimes, I think, we don’t do as much for TSA as we should to make it more year-round. I think that coming to these meetings are a great way to promote and learn ways to make TSA better and more well-rounded.

It think the most important thing is to be friendly to everyone. I’ve made an amazing group of friends over my four years in TSA and they’re the people who encourage me to do my best. Try new things. Push yourself and make new friends. If you do your best, that’s what really matters.

Leadership isn’t always about a central person, barking commands to others. It is about working together as a group to innovate and come up with new ideas. Leaders must have good qualities that make people want to follow and listen to them. Leadership requires more than an iron fist. It requires a series of good attributes.

Sometimes, as a group, you need to have an actual leader. And other times, you need to have a network of communication. As a leader, it is bad to start issuing commands if they don’t help to control the situation. It will just make people argue. People need to work together and take the best of every idea.

I learned that there are several kinds of problem and most of them require a supportive discussion rather than a commanding decision-maker.

My takeaway from this is that I am going to involve the robotics team more than I have in the past when we build the robot. I will also include them in all of the decisions that I make for the robot.