DelVal Students Attend Intensive Leadership Development Program

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Delaware Valley University (DelVal) students participated in a four-day, intensive leadership development program over winter break. The LeaderShape Institute and DelVal partnered to host a session of the Institute from Monday, January 9 to Friday, January 13. The LeaderShape Institute is recognized nationally as one of the premier leadership development programs for college students.  The retreat took place at Black Rock Retreat Center in Quarryville, PA, where several DelVal staff members helped facilitate the program.

Those who participate in LeaderShape gain leadership skills, clarify their values, and become more resilient as they work to make change in their communities and have a positive impact on society.

The University received gifts from NJM Insurance Group, and Univest Financial which funded this year’s program for students. Ann Mossing, Director of Major Gifts at DelVal, Cam Maio, Vice President Marketing and Pat Hartpence, Corporate Giving Office from NJM Insurance, attended a session and then had lunch with our LeaderShape attendees at the retreat.

“It is inspiring to see our students grow their skills, vision and confidence at LeaderShape, said Mossing. “This opportunity helps to build our next generation of leaders. We are grateful to our sponsors, NJM Insurance Group and Univest Financial, who also see the value of this unique, innovative program.”

Ariela Cambronero Fernandez ’26, a small animal science major, redefined leadership during her time at LeaderShape.

“Through this experience, I learned that anyone could have a vision, but it takes a good leader to work hard and see their vision through,” said Cambronero Fernandez.

Caleb Messenger ’26, an animal science pre-professional major, gained a new perspective on goal setting. Messenger explains that while you can have goals you should also have a vision.

“Your vision is what you want to do to change the world (or your community if the whole world seems a bit challenging). Goals are stepping stones toward your vision, they should be achievable, and you should be able to clearly see the path toward achieving them,” said Messenger. “Both are important to have in your life as we strive towards making the world a better place.”

Messenger also enjoyed connecting with classmates and building stronger connections with DelVal peers at the retreat.

“Even just in the first few days back to classes, it's been a lot of fun seeing people that I met there and saying hi,” said Messenger.

At LeaderShape, students created unforgettable memories, gained new perspectives on what it means to be a leader, and grew more prepared for not only their career trajectories but their life trajectories

To learn more about attending LeaderShape, contact Justin Brouse at

DelVal donors pose for a photo in front of a board that says welcome!