The following post was written by guest blogger Meagan Gunnels, Epsilon Zeta–Arkansas State University.

The Academy for Collegiate Officers was—hands down—one of the most incredible events I’ve ever attended. The weekend really reignited my love for Alpha Gamma Delta. I left feeling so encouraged to be the best leader I can for my chapter and very prepared for the year ahead. I am so thankful for all the memories and lessons learned!

Carly, Kaitlin and Anna and I left early Friday morning to head to Indianapolis for a weekend of leadership, fun and sisterhood.

When we arrived on Friday evening, we ate dinner then listened to Jenn Weaver from Polaris speak on our different self-care styles. Before the weekend began, we were asked to take a personality assessment that would identify our self-care style. Jenn explained what our results meant. I have always loved personality tests. I felt inspired to take what I learned from Jenn and apply it to my experience as an officer. I can be a better leader by learning about my sisters and allowing that knowledge to guide me in conversations.

After a quick breakout session with our officer groups, we had the opportunity to participate in a meal packing service event with the nearly 500 other sisters at the Academy. We had so much fun listening to music, getting to know sisters from across North America and packing rice and other ingredients into meal packets. It was a great way to end the first day.

The next morning, we had to be up bright and early to start our long, yet exciting day! We drank all the coffee in sight and started our morning off right with a fun Fitness Marshall dance video. Throughout the morning, we spent time in our officer specific sessions. One of my favorite sessions was on conflict resolution and finding better ways to confront sisters with care. We had time to practice our newfound conflict resolution skills on each other and it was really encouraging chatting with other sisters. I learned just as much from the other sisters I met as I did from the sessions.

Throughout the weekend, my chapter’ sisters and I met for Team Time to begin putting together a plan for the year ahead. We used this time to collaborate on new ideas and discuss ways to implement what we learned. I really loved one of the roundtable discussions about ways to make regular chapter meetings more fun, so we decided to start playing Fitness Marshall videos before each meeting. Our members loved it!

The thing that really put a cherry on top of an amazing weekend was visiting the actual International Headquarters building! We were in awe of seeing all the archives and old badges. We had a great weekend in Indianapolis and have so many great memories and lessons learned to look back on. Thanks for an amazing experience!

View photos from ACO 2020 here!

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