Student Leadership Academy

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Meet the Alumni

If you’re wondering if our Student Leadership Academy (SLA) is right for you – get to know some of our alumni!  Students from all over the country attend our SLA every summer – this could be you.

Carly Griffith

SLA 2016
Philadelphia, PA

Why I decided to go to the Student Leadership Academy (SLA)
I decided to go to the SLA program because I wanted to learn more about Alex Lemonade. I wanted to make a difference in my community.

What I learned at SLA
In just a few days at SLA, I learned many leadership skills: to lead, work together and have patience. Being a leadership is always a wonderful opportunity yet sometimes it can be challenging. SLA helped me to become an active leader and to have fun in whatever I do.

Place I would love to travel to
I would love to travel to Ireland and Hawaii.

If I could meet one person from the past or present, who would it be and why
If I could meet one person it would definitely be Carrie Underwood. She has been an inspiration to me since I was a little girl due to the fact that country music is my favorite type of music and American Idol was my favorite show to watch.

What are your favorite hobbies?
I enjoy doing gymnastics, hanging with friends and family, and listening to music.

Many people would be surprised if they knew I...
Many people who be surprised if they knew I played flute, piano and guitar.

Devon Leslie

SLA 2016
Cherry Hill, NJ

Devon Leslie, a student from New Jersey, joined Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation as a Student Ambassador in July 2016. Focused on community service efforts, Devon is President to local organizations including Bridge Tutoring and Cum Laude Society which offer free tutoring and mentoring services to students within her community. Devon, with a love of theatre, works for a non-profit organization, Voorhees Theatre Company, as a student board member, dance captain, sound technician and camp counselor. As a result of success from DECA, a business competition, her role as Editor-in-Chief of Yearbook, and from her involvement in community service, Devon intends to pursue a business oriented career. When health concerns arose within her own family, Devon became more interested in cancer research and helping to find a cure, leading her to ALSF’s Student Leadership Academy where she combined her love of business with her love of giving back.  

Why I decided to go to the Student Leadership Academy (SLA)
Since I single-handedly cannot find a cure, I decided to attend SLA because I thought it was the best opportunity to contribute to saving lives. I knew SLA would give me the chance to support the resilient children and families battling pediatric cancer, further my business skills and allow me to meet like-minded peers. I can confidently say that SLA exceeded my expectations; I left knowing that I made a difference, grew as an individual and built lifelong friendships and memories. 

What I learned at SLA
At SLA, I learned the qualities of a good leader, more about my personality and, therefore, I learned how to identify the strengths I offer and the areas of improvement I possess. I also improved my presentation, problem solving, and communication skills. In essence, at SLA, I learned how to work as a team to achieve fundraising and awareness efforts through innovation, persistence and, of course, lots of fun.  

Place I would love to travel to
I would love to travel to Spain since it is my ambition to become bilingual.

If I could meet one person from the past or present, who would it be and why
I would want to meet the cast of The Office because it is the best Netflix show to binge watch.   

What are your favorite hobbies?
Some of my favorite hobbies include theatre, kayaking, traveling, tutoring and watching movies.

Many people would be surprised if they knew I...
Like to read the last page of books first

Elizabeth Edmunds

SLA 2016
Lynchburg, VA

Elizabeth Edmunds joined the fight against childhood cancer in July 2016.
As a Virginia native, many people had not heard of ALSF in her state. She has spread awareness by having her own Alex¹s Million Mile team, and starting a lemon club at her school.  The more she has spoken about ALSF, she has found that many people have a personal connection with childhood cancer and realized how important this organization is with the children effected. She can¹t wait to see what ALSF does in the future and can¹t wait to be a part of it.

Why I decided to go to the Student Leadership Academy (SLA) 
I went the Student Leadership Academy because I wanted to make a difference. I wanted to learn more about myself and how I could be helpful to others. I also went because it sounded fun. I figured it couldn¹t hurt to apply, and I am so glad I did.

What I learned at SLA
I learned so much at SLA. It is hard to put it into words. I learned so much more about ALSf, but most importantly I learned at one person can make a difference. Alex inspired me to help make a change. It was truly an amazing time, and I made so many amazing memories that I will never forget. 

Place I would love to travel to
Everywhere. Give me a plane ticket to anywhere and I will take it will no questions asked. Right now, I really want to go to Costa Rica, though.

If I could meet one person from the past or present, who would it be and why 
That is a hard question, but I think it would be Audrey Hepburn, because she is just timeless. it would so amazing to just meet her in person.

What are your favorite hobbies?
I love to dance. It just releases all of my stress from school and it is a great distraction. If I¹m having a bad day, I will go to dance and forget all about it.

Many people would be surprised if they knew I....
I have studied Spanish since I was in kindergarten and I can speak conversational Spanish

Riley Connelly

SLA 2015
Haddonfield, NJ
Boston University

Why I decided to go to the Student Leadership Academy (SLA) 
I decided to go to the Student Leadership Academy because I have a friend, Brooke Mulford, who has been diagnosed with neuroblastoma since the age of 4 and Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation has helped her and caused her comfort and happiness while fighting this disease. I also just love the overall message of ALSF.

What I learned at SLA
I gained leadership skills, how to fundraise, a more in-Depth idea of what ASLF is all about, and learned how to make genuine friendships out of being with people for only a few days.

Place I would love to travel to
Hawaii because it seems to be a care free and loving place to visit! 

If I could meet one person from the past or present, who would it be and why 
Past: obviously Alex! I would love to talk to her and see her enthusiasm, power and happiness in person. 

Present: Oprah because she seems so loving and caring and generous! 

What are your favorite hobbies?
Volunteering, baking, cooking reading, working out, and practicing yoga 

Many people would be surprised if they knew I…
I am a certified yoga teacher

Declan Cooper

SLA 2016
Middletown, NJ

Declan learned about the ALSF when one of his classmates was diagnosed with cancer during his freshman year. Looking for ways to become involved, Declan found the SLA. Since July 2016, Declan has been fighting against cancer and raising money for the cause. At his school, Declan founded the Lemon Club, which has been very successful with support from his school. Declan is also an active member of his school’s Student Council, Spanish Club, and FBLA Club. He also earned a varsity letter from his school’s rowing team. Outside of school, Declan is a member of the Monmouth Conservatory of Music Chamber Orchestra, and he teaches the cello to children in his community.
 
Why I decided to go to the Student Leadership Academy (SLA)
I decided to attend the Student Leadership Academy (SLA) after one of my classmates was diagnosed with and passed away from cancer. I wanted to learn more about the disease and hopefully learn ways I could make a difference.

What I learned at SLA
My experience at SLA was invaluable. I learned about cancer, but I also learned leadership skills: team-building, organization, and public speaking.

Place I would love to travel to
Russia. There’s so much history there, and I’m a big fan of cold weather!

If I could meet one person from the past or present, who would it be and why
Leonardo da Vinci. I think it’d be interesting to get his perspective on life and the world. Also, I’d like to try out all of his cool inventions!

What are your favorite hobbies?
I enjoy playing the cello, practicing martial arts (Tae Kwon Do and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu), and playing basketball with my friends.

Many people would be surprised if they knew I…
burn incense regularly. It helps me relax, and I love the smell