MIAMI SHORES, Fla.—Barry University’s female student-athletes participated in a leadership workshop presented by Captain Nicole Villareal Bastian of the United States Marine Corps. Members from all seven of the Buccaneers women’s teams benefitted from the exercise.
Bastian, one of the first two dozen women to graduate from The Citadel, the Military College of South Carolina, ran cross country, scored the first goal for the first women's soccer team, was the first and only female on the General's drill team (Rifle Legion) and became the first female graduate to attend law school when she was admitted to Stetson’s School of Law.
The workshop was designed to help college students acquire the leadership skills instilled into Marines, a process called, by Inc. Magazine’s David H. Freeman, “the best management-training program in America.”
“The experience at the leadership seminar was great,” sophomore softball player Ashley Fernandez said. “It helped me open my eyes to things I have overlooked many times, while playing softball and being a captain on various teams. Captain Bastian also provided a positive example that gender is no barrier to effective leadership. It increased my confidence and knowledge as a leader both as an individual and as part of team.”
The 14 leadership traits, defined by the Corps as “qualities of character” that good leaders develop into strengths, covered in the workshop included justice, bearing, judgment, unselfishness, dependability, courage, integrity, knowledge, decisiveness, loyalty, tact, endurance, initiative and enthusiasm.
“The presentation was really great,” sophomore rower Bethany Desmond said. “I liked it because it related really well to my team in particular, the rowing team. All of the traits that she [Bastian] explained applied to our practices, races and just generally the way we are supposed carry ourselves as a team. And I think all of my teammates related really well.”
Captain Bastian’s personal awards include a Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and an Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal. In 2010 she received the II MEF Navy and Marine Corps Association Leadership Award. In 2012, she received recognition from Who’s Who Among Latin American Professionals.