Monday, June 03, 2013

Leadership lived: Student serves as governor of statewide organization



Zachary Sullivan’s University of Illinois Springfield education has taught him that good leaders don’t always have fancy titles.

“I don’t mind playing the support roles, because I feel like it strengthens the organization and you can be an effective leader without having the front title of the organization,” said Sullivan.

In March, he was elected governor of the statewide Model Illinois Government (MIG) organization. It’s the first major leadership role he has held. MIG puts on a government simulation for over 300 college students each year at the state capitol.

“It’s a great title to bring back to UIS,” said Sullivan. “Eight of the last twelve governors have been UIS students, so it’s a great honor for me to bring this back to the University of Illinois Springfield.”

As a non-traditional student, Sullivan transferred to UIS after graduating from Blackhawk College in Moline. He chose UIS because of its location in the state capital and the hands-on experience it provides to students studying state government.

“I think going to UIS was by far the best decision I could have ever made,” said Sullivan. “I came to Springfield to study political science. That’s why I choose UIS.”

Sullivan has also helped lobby for university funding during the annual University of Illinois Day at the Capitol and is an active member of the College Republicans, the Global Issues Club, and Model United Nations student organizations.

He’s grateful for the abundance of opportunities offered to him as UIS and encourages others to take advantage.

“Basically (if) you come to UIS you will find your potential and will learn how to maximize your potential, while learning to be affective as well,” said Sullivan.

Sullivan graduated from UIS in May 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in political science and plans to continue his education as a graduate student at UIS.

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