Student council leaders from all four high schools within Lincoln County School District came together for the annual Oregon Association of Student Councils (OASC) Fall Leadership Conference: The Rise of Leadership in Seaside, held on November 5-6, 2023.
Over 50 student council members from Newport, Taft, Toledo, and Waldport high schools joined students from across the state for a weekend of workshops, speakers, and networking.
Waldport High School played a pivotal role in the event, crafting the conference’s rules and producing a safety video through their video production class, which served as the opening feature.
Taft High senior Jay Riggs, Sr. concluded his year-long service as the State’s Mid-West Board Representation and led a packed workshop on the different leadership styles needed to have a positive impact. Taft sophomore Taylor Goodart ran opposed to replace Riggs’ position and won the votes of the other Midwest schools in her region. These leaders are responsible for attending numerous leadership meetings and conferences throughout the year, in addition to planning the following year’s Fall Leadership Conference.
The conference provided a platform for students to engage with inspiring speakers. Notable figures like Monti Washington, a speaker, poet, and activist, and Donovan Beck, a filmmaker, photographer, and author, delivered impactful keynote addresses. Students also had the opportunity to choose from a variety of leadership breakout sessions led by their peers and advisors from across the state.
Krai Chaysrewan, a freshman at Taft High, was deeply moved by Monti Washington’s keynote address. “The speaker (Monti Washington) was incredibly inspiring and motivated everyone in the room to strive for better,” Chaysrewan remarked. “It was a unique experience to witness everyone coming together with a shared goal.”
Crystal Hinds, Indian Education TOSA for LCSD and a chaperone from Toledo, who also serves as an OASC board member, expressed the profound impact OASC has on youth. She highlighted how the organization helps young individuals discover the leadership qualities already within them, nurturing their growth through the power of student voice and empowerment. “Listening to the students, you can see their lives change once they have the opportunity to attend a conference like this,” Hinds said. “That’s why I have such a deep appreciation for OASC.”
The Oregon Association of Student Councils is governed by a 21-member board, consisting of ten individuals who are secondary school teachers, advisors, administrators, or alumni actively involved in student activities. The Student Executive Council (SEC) comprises the remaining eleven board members, including the State President, two At-Large Representatives, seven Regional Representatives, and one appointed mid-level representative. OASC has been dedicated to serving students and schools in Oregon since its establishment in 1949.