Hair-raising: OMNI Council Leadership Forum kicks off with a little fun

Two contestants in comedian Craig Tornquist's "Big Hair Contest" at Friday morning's kick-off of the OMNI Council Student Leadership Forum at Trinity United Methodist.

LAPEER, Michigan — Nearly 150 high school students from Lapeer Community Schools packed Trinity United Methodist this morning for the opening session of the 2011 OMNI Council Student Leadership Forum. Before students were broken off into their informational breakout sessions and student-only discussion groups, acclaimed comedian Craig Tornquist entertained the group with his unique brand of comedy.

Tornquist is two parts funny and one part fundamental.

“Little decisions made every day will determine if doors are open or closed,” he told the students. “My experience has been, if you dream really big, work really hard and make excellent choices …  it can be a wonderful life.”

His heartfelt leadership lesson was parallel parked between a “big hair contest” and a performance of “Baby Come Home to Me” by Craig Norquist and The Heartthrobs — the part of The Heartthrobs was played by a couple flamboyant students clad in black sunglasses.

Check out the video clip:

Before he closed, he relayed to the students a statement from one of his favorite comedians, the late Red Skelton: “Your talent is God’s gift to you. What you do with that talent is your gift to God.”

The forum, sponsored by OMNI Council, is an annual event aimed at cultivating leadership qualities in young people. Students in grades 9-12 representing East, West and Community high schools participated.

Throughout the morning and early afternoon, sessions were held on the following topics: Courage and leadership, caring and relationships, school and future planning and “overcoming the bad.”

Check out all the photos from the OMNI Council Forum on Flickr.

OMNI is a student led group made up of students from all three District high schools, Lapeer East, Lapeer West and Lapeer Community High School. This group meets once a month to plan out service activities and to promote projects between the high schools including, Battle of the Bands and the Omni Forum. Meetings are conducted by co-chairs, but everyone participates, giving their input on ways to help develop leadership skills in all students and identify concerns of students from Lapeer Community Schools.

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