from the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors (AFA) for its innovative
approach to truly experiential education and its exceptional execution.
Be Social. Be Excellent. Be an Every|Day Hero.
~ produced by Phired Up and the RA Project ~
It's not a conference. It's not a seminar.
It's a real-world learning experience for
college students and professionals who work with them.
In June of 2012, the RESPONSE ABILITY Project and Phired Up Productions collaborated to produce a groundbreaking event in Chicago called BE THE PERSON. This inaugural, and now award-winning, event was no regular "conference," by far. Around 70 participants gathered at Loyola University to not just talk about becoming leaders, change agents, and Every|Day Heroes, but to actually learn by doing.
While Loyola served as a beautiful host location, the real classroom was the streets of Chicago. Over 1/2 of the event took place on sidewalks, on the "El" train, around major landmarks and amongst tourists, on the gorgeous shores of Lake Michigan, and in real interactions with the people of The Windy City. The stated objectives of the event, designed for students and professionals involved with college campuses, were as follows:
After a powerful combination of Social Excellence and Every|Day Hero focused learning is experienced, participants will leave BE THE PERSON…
- Emotionally shocked and reacquainted with their true personal purpose and values.
- With the social awareness, self-confidence, and personal power to intervene in problem situations and be an Every|Day Hero.
- With a written plan to deeply matter to the world through social engagement, connection and organization.
- Prepared to lead revolutionary change in their communities.
These objectives were met and thoroughly exceeded because of the courage, engagement, and creativity of the participants who very much created their own learning experience. Leaving BE THE PERSON, participants were in tune with their own journey to find their life's cause and to use that cause to create real change. Participants didn't just learn and plan, they ACTED upon their cause and got started with the hard work of changing the world.
Some highlights of the inaugural event included:
- Level II RESPONSE ABILITY Facilitator Certification led by Drs. Alan and Gran Berkowitz
- A "Flash Mob of Kindness" to feel the power of generosity
- A "Social Excellence Journey" through the city of Chicago via train (stopping at Wrigley Field, The Bean, The Watertower, DePaul University, and more)
- A panel of "Social Excellence Superheroes" from organizations that are changing the world
- Mindfulness meditation on the shores of Lake Michigan
- A $5 Generosity challenge ("Here's $5. Use it to create a story with new friends. See you in 2 hours.")
- "Into The Streets" opening challenge the minute participants arrived
- Nightly bedtime stories that taught important lessons
- A "flipped" classroom with lessons taught via text and video
The following comments came from participants six months after the event...
"Since BE THE PERSON 2012, I have been able to encourage women across the country to be
socially excellent and not succumb to bystander behavior in their everyday lives through my role as a
Zeta Tau Alpha Traveling Leadership Consultant...BE THE PERSON gave me purpose and inspiration to
help others and allowed me to step out of my comfort zone to challenge myself and others to
live socially excellent lives."
Jessica Patterson, Zeta Tau Alpha
"For some time leading up to BE THE PERSON, I had a desire to become more involved in my community,
but hadn’t really made the effort to do so. I am now serving on the Board for Big Brothers Big Sisters
and was recently matched with a little. We are currently running a campaign called Real Men Mentors,
which aims to recruit more men to serve in the program. I am grateful for my BE THE PERSON
experience and for the push it gave me to do more to impact my world."
Jason Bosch, Emporia State University
See the powerful closing video used at the event by clicking here.
Click here to express your interest and
we will keep you up-to-date on the event.