CEO: Risk management affects student leaders

No one has a more difficult job than elected leaders, and it is up to them to make responsible decisions for their organizations, a speaker said Thursday.Dave Westol, owner and CEO of Limberlost Consulting in Carmel, Ind., discussed risk management for student-organized social events as well as the role of student leaders and faculty advisers. This event at the Brown-Lupton Student Center was a joint venture of the Office of Student Organizations and Campus Life and about 80 faculty and students attended.

Student leaders need to recognize ideas that serve their organization’s best interests and make others realize if they make a wrong decision, Westol said.

“That is part of your leadership role,” Westol said. “Take your time (and) make sure you have things in place.”

Westol said things can go wrong in a simple event and students can take an initiative to minimize those risks. In an event, especially one involving alcohol, Westol said, it is always a good idea to have a guest list to keep track of everyone attending the event.

“Policies are great, but caring about others and doing the right things – that is the most important aspect of risk management,” Westol said. “If you can do those things, you are way ahead of the game.”

Forrest Lane, assistant director of the TCU Leadership Center, said the event intends to help people understand their responsibilities as a student leader.

“Sometimes we do not really think about what our liabilities and our responsibilities are,” Lane said. “It is more of a discussion to really help people in that decision-making process.”

Lane said the event is a response to a Texas bill passed in May, which requires Texas colleges and universities to provide risk management trainings to students and student organization advisers. This event is intended to bring students and faculty closer, so they can work on risk management together.

According to a bill analysis by the Senate Research Center, “There is a concern over the number of fatalities occurring as a result of hazing, drinking or other activities associated with fraternities.”

This event, however, targets all student organizations at TCU, Lane said.

Iris Reyes, potential new members director of Sigma Lambda Alpha, said she was attending the event because Westol talked about TCU’s hazing policies.

“They have a really good policy,” Reyes said. “There is no way you can get around it.