Artifact 2

For my second artifact, I want to share about my experience as a Lead Builder in Mount Legacy Week. Mount Legacy Week is an event that gives all first-year members of the Mount Leadership Society Scholars Program the chance to carry out two impactful service projects with local agencies. Each member joins one of six teams that focus on different topics, and the group that I was most excited to join was Team Environment. Within each team, there are two Lead Builders that help lead the group throughout each phase of the project, and I was immediately drawn to this position. 

As a Lead Builder, I have been given the opportunity to help lead a team of nearly 20 people in creating two-environmentally focused service projects. Although there is still a month left until our actual service event, I have already recognized my growth as a leader from serving in this position. Over the last two months, I have helped host weekly Zoom meetings with my team, designated tasks to team members, contacted various service agencies, and navigated the challenges of planning a service event in the uncertainty of a pandemic. 

To succeed in each of these undertakings, I had to draw on what I’ve learned about effective leadership in my scholars class, and to channel this into my own style of leadership. Over the planning stages, my team and I quickly discovered that some tasks in a project are unappealing and unlikely to garner any volunteers. Rather than forcing someone to take the lead on one certain assignment, I volunteered to do so myself. As a leader, I believe it’s important to show your team members that you would never ask them to take on a role that you would not also be willing to take on yourself. I have found that leading by example helps develop a mutual respect among team members, as no one is left feeling as if they are being taken advantage of. 

Additionally, throughout the course of this project, I have learned more about why I enjoy being a leader; I’ve realized that I thrive when being entrusted with extra responsibility, that I deeply appreciate the connections I make with my fellow team members, and that I love being highly involved in projects for which I am passionate about. While I will still serve in this leadership role for another month, I am already extremely grateful for all the opportunities it’s granted me, and I look forward to all else it has to offer. 



[“Career” is where you can collect information about your experiences and skills that will apply to your future career.  Like your resume, this is information that will evolve over time and should be continually updated.  For more guidance on using your ePortfolio, including questions and prompts that will help you get started, please visit the Honors & Scholars ePortfolio course in Carmen. To get answers to specific questions, please email Delete these instructions and add your own post.]

Artifact 1

For my first artifact, I chose to focus on my Girl Scout Gold Award project. To earn this award, I planted a butterfly garden behind my old elementary school to help the monarch butterfly population and to also educate the students there about the importance of taking care of the environment. Over my 80+ hour project, I collaborated with various community leaders and garden centers to make my garden a success. After completing the hard work of planting the garden, my favorite part was having the opportunity to share my project with the students at the school. Every week, I met with the kids in the afterschool program. They were always very excited to help me water the plants and to learn more about caterpillars and butterflies. I also even got the chance to speak to two second grade classes about the threat that pesticides pose to milkweed, and how important it is for each of us to do our part in preserving nature.

Over the course of my project, I grew as both a problem solver and as a leader. While I was thorough in planning out my project, some factors outside of my control meant that things didn’t always go to plan. To stay on track, I learned the importance of being adaptable and of taking advantage of the opportunities that are available to you, even if they aren’t the ones that you expected. By working alongside authority figures in my community, I also developed a greater sense of confidence in my communication skills and my professionalism. In addition, I developed more leadership skills when speaking with the younger students, as I made sure to always be a positive role model for them and to use my project as a platform to encourage them to take an interest in nature. Although I took a lot away from my Gold Award in terms of personal growth, I am most proud of the way in which it allowed me to give back to my school and community, and also help preserve the monarch butterfly population.

About Me

Hi! My name is Leah Horan, and I am a freshman at The Ohio State University. I am currently majoring in Chemical Engineering and am pursuing a minor in business.

While attending Centerville High School, I was very dedicated in all my areas of involvement. In the classroom, I distinguished myself as a National Merit Commended Scholar, earned the Ohio Seal of Biliteracy for Spanish, and was selected as a Presidential Scholar Candidate. When I wasn’t studying, I played a variety of sports such as soccer, swim, and track, worked three different jobs, and served 100+ hours at a local hospital and other organizations. I also earned my Girl Scout Gold Award by planting a butterfly garden at my elementary school and helped to educate students about environmental conservation, in addition to being a recipient of the Rotary Youth Leadership Award.

In college, while continuing to be very committed to my studies, I am also pursuing growth in all spheres of my life. By fulling involving myself in the Mount Leadership Society Scholars Program where I am a member of the Service Committee, I strive to improve as a better leader, teammate, and advocate for positive change. I hope that by developing strong character and achieving balance in my life that I will be better suited to apply my education to a life of meaningful work in whatever career I decide, with the intent of creating a lasting, purposeful impact.

Year in Review

Although the past two semesters flew by, over the last year I feel that I have grown a lot as a student, leader, and member of the Buckeye community.

Within the last 9 months, I have switched my major four times. I initially started in the Fisher College of Business but quickly realized I was also very interested in a career in engineering. After entering the College of Engineering, I learned more about Industrial and Systems Engineering, which I realized would allow me to combine my interests in both business and engineering. Although I switched majors quite a few times, it gave me the clarity to identify Industrial and Systems Engineering as the career path that I would like to pursue over the next three years. 

Additionally, I found that I developed greater leadership skills this year. As part of my scholars program, the Mount Leadership Society, I helped lead a team of 18 of my peers in planning two service events. This included running weekly Zoom meetings within our team, contacting service agencies, and hosting a virtual service event. This experience helped me gain more confidence in my ability to organize and lead a group of people and improve upon my communication skills. I also became DICE certified over the last year, and with this knowledge I believe that I will be able to be more inclusive and fair in my future leadership roles. 

Despite the restrictions on social gatherings this year, I feel like I have grown the most as a member of the Buckeye community. Within my scholars program especially, I have found myself surrounded by people with great character and energy who inspire me to pursue my own ambitions. I have also found a greater connection to OSU by working at Curl Market, where I get to work alongside dozens of other students and make connections with a diverse group of fellow Buckeyes. While the limitations placed by the pandemic did bring some disappointments over the past year, I believe I am leaving this school year as a more confident, capable, and optimistic person, and I am excited to see what the next three years will bring. 


[ “G.O.A.L.S.” is a place where students write about how their planned, current, and future activities may fit into the Honors & Scholars G.O.A.L.S.: Global Awareness, Original Inquiry, Academic Enrichment, Leadership Development, and Service Engagement. For more guidance on using your ePortfolio, including questions and prompts that will help you get started, please visit the Honors & Scholars ePortfolio course in Carmen. To get answers to specific questions, please email Delete these instructions and add your own post.

  • Global Awareness: Students cultivate and develop their appreciation for diversity and each individual’s unique differences. For example, consider course work, study abroad, involvement in cultural organizations or activities, etc.
  • Original Inquiry: Honors & Scholars students understand the research process by engaging in experiences ranging from in-class scholarly endeavors to creative inquiry projects to independent experiences with top researchers across campus and in the global community. For example, consider research, creative productions or performances, advanced course work, etc.
  • Academic Enrichment: Honors & Scholars students pursue academic excellence through rigorous curricular experiences beyond the university norm both in and out of the classroom.
  • Leadership Development: Honors & Scholars students develop leadership skills that can be demonstrated in the classroom, in the community, in their co-curricular activities, and in their future roles in society.
  • Service Engagement: Honors & Scholars students commit to service to the community.]