Leadership: A Foundational Skill

Leadership: A Foundational Skill

Leadership is a foundational skill on a team, here Sierra Slentz and Alexis Stockton, the Lower Dauphin Cheerleading Captains, explains how. 

“Leadership to me means that I’m setting a good example, and that I am trusted by my team.” Stockton said. She believes leadership is important when being a captain on a team because then others will look up to you, and want to follow your footsteps. Aysha Pich, a junior on the team, said “Alexis is always there for anyone who needs help. She’s always answering questions and making sure everybody is paying attention when somebody is talking.” One of Stockton’s teammates, Makenzi Lutz, even said she learned from Stockton’s leadership that as long as you work hard, you can always reach your goals. 

Sierra Slentz says, “You have to be able to lead your team in certain aspects of cheerleading when the coach is not around. Being captain is basically like being a mini coach. Just like a coach has to be able to lead, help out, and push you to your full potential, a captain has the duty as well.” Slentz said that her coaches and mom have pushed her to be a leader. They have always taught her to take initiative, be confident, and when you fall get back up again. Teammate, Tanya Tregea, said that Slentz has inspired her to push herself when things don’t go right, and it makes her happy when she hears “you can do this” from her captain. Freshman, Emma Kanzler, said “Her leadership positively affects the team because it makes everyone feel welcomed.” They both look up to her confidence, independence, and willingness to help. 

Stockton said at the end of her interview “Even though you are in the captain role, you have to work just as hard as everyone else. Just because you earned that role, doesn’t mean you’ll keep it.” So her advice is to keep a balance between work and fun but still remember why you are there. Slentz said “I want to add that being a captain doesn’t always mean you have to be there for your teammate just at a game, practice, or bonding event. I think it’s important that you show you’re there outside the sport as well. One thing I always tell my girls is that if you EVER need anything non-cheer related, reach out because I want to be there for them.” Her advice for future captains is to honestly have fun, but remember you need to be serious at times too, and always push your teammates to their full potential.