Friends Select Student News Media

The Falcon

Friends Select Student News Media

The Falcon

Friends Select Student News Media

The Falcon

Purposeful Transformation and Leadership Development: A Sneak Peek into Norman’s New Class

Norman Bayard, Dean of Students

This year, Norman Bayard, Upper School Dean of Students, is teaching his first Friends Select course: Purposeful Transformation and Leadership Development.  In the class, Norman leads his students through a process of self-discovery, emphasizing the power of purpose-driven transformation.

According to the 2023-2024 course catalog, in the class, “students will learn the most common leadership styles (transformative, delegative, authoritative, participative, transactional and the starfish model) and reflect upon which leadership style they are most in alignment with.” 

Norman has invited 5 speakers with different perspectives on how they lead. One speaker was a veteran. It might sound contradictory to bring a veteran to a Quaker school, but Norman thinks the opposite. “[The] Military speaker isn’t telling a story about war, but instead of how he leads and how he manages and stays consistent every day,” Norman says.

Norman also invited a student’s parent to speak to the class. The mother of Annindyah Weekes ‘24 came in to talk to the class about self-love. She engaged the class by doing an activity with Play-Doh, representing the students’ inner selves. They were told to play with the clay and print words on it. The activity symbolized how words can leave an imprint on an individual. With the diversity of speakers that Norman brings to the class, he’s emphasizing that leaders don’t have to fit into any specific mold.

For many, leadership requires perseverance. Norman has established a routine designed for the students to connect with loved ones in class, and remind themselves why they push every day to be better people. “Students are required to bring in a notebook and pencil, but also a small mirror and a picture of a late family member…it’s a reminder to keep going through their day for their loved one and to keep going every day,” he explains. 

According to Norman, as students embark on their educational journey, they make strides toward becoming leaders who leave a lasting impact on their lives and the communities they touch. Gavin Ewing, ‘25, takes the class to better his leadership skills in and outside of the classroom. “I think that I gained a lot from taking the class. In the real world and on the soccer field. I’ve learned to take more accountability,” he says.

Zoie Jackson-Lawrence ‘25, another student in the course, reveals that memorable moments always seem to happen in the classroom. “There was one class where we shared what we wanted our Legacy to be here at Friends Select… [the class] verbally responded to each other to affirm. [It’s a] great class because not only were we building community, but we were also being healers and giving each other medicine. We were assuring each other and making connections.” 

The class meets during B-block.

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About the Contributor

Bryce Dodd is a senior Friends select and a wonderful student. He is the captain of the soccer team and a blossoming photographer. His journalism beat is FSS drama, swimming, and squash.

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