The Order of the Arrow provides many opportunities for leadership and training in leadership. Only youth can hold positions as officers, and capable adults are selected to advise the officers. This provides many leadership openings for active Arrowmen under the age of 21 to fill.
Leadership roles in the Order can help the youth develop skills
in planning, communication, management and other areas. This experience could help in applications to a good university, or for employment. College students who know that they will be too busy to fill a leadership role should consider leaving these opportunities open for other Arrowmen who will have the time to fulfill their responsibilities.
Those youth interested in leadership in the Order should regularly attend Chapter meetings and Lodge events. The troop leadership position of ‘Order of the Arrow Representative’ is important to making strong chapters, and the scout in this role should encourage members of their unit to attend OA events. Any interested Arrowman may attend
the Executive Committee Meetings, and opportunities for service are often identified at these meetings that require willing volunteers. Serving on camp staff at Camp Old Indian provides several opportunities to participate in the dance pageant and ceremonies. Attendance at Spring
Fellowship, Dixie Fellowship, Fall Fellowship and the annual banquet are important for those seeking Chapter or Lodge offices.
Although some ‘politics’ are involved in selecting leaders and other activities, the values of the Order demand that debate centre on positive goals and service, rather than personal attacks or creating a cult-of personality. Those Arrowmen who have been active and provided good service are more likely to persuade their peers to vote for them, and to give an effective nominating speech for them. The Order is a volunteer organization, which makes a motivational style of leadership more effective than issuing commands.
The National Leadership Seminar is one great training opportunity for Arrowmen who want to improve their leadership skills. Due to limitations on the number who may attend NLS, priority is given to Lodge officers, Chapter Chiefs and Committee Chairman.
Arrowmen under the age of 21 may also apply for one of the OA High Adventure opportunities each summer. The Northern Tier OA Wilderness Voyage, a very affordable 2-week canoe trip of the Boundary Waters starting at the Northern Tier High Adventure Base near Ely, Minnesota, or OA Trail Crew at the Philmont Scout Ranch in Cimarron, New Mexico.