Mailing address:  Hinman Box 6181, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire 03755
Bringing Together the Leaders of Today and Tomorrow
Project RightChoice’s Leadership Initiative

The Leadership Initiative takes the form of small, intimate leadership conferences and seminars where advisors and community leaders can share their experiences and insights with the members of Project RightChoice.  Members should leave these seminars inspired to pursue exciting careers and personal initiatives and should be confident that they are developing a skill set that will help them succeed as future leaders in such fields as medicine, finance, business, government, and education.

The Leadership Initiative speakers should relish the opportunity to shape the outlook of Project RightChoice members and should feel refreshed by their interactions with the moral and ethical leaders of tomorrow.  Throughout the program, Project RightChoice members will learn from the insight and experience of our distinguished guests.  Taking these lessons and experiences, Project RightChoice members will apply the skills they have learned in order to make the world a better place.

Project RightChoice is committed to producing the moral and ethical leaders of tomorrow.  It sets out to achieve this goal through two main avenues:

1.) Practical, hands-on experience as the members of Project RightChoice managing a completely student-run organization, raising funds and awareness on behalf of underserved populations in need. 

2.) Direct contact with and advice from the moral and ethical leaders of today.

The Leadership Initiative works to develop this second avenue of leadership development.  The members of Project RightChoice stand to benefit from the wealth of knowledge that community leaders have amassed from their life experiences.  Thus, the Leadership Initiative works tirelessly to bring together the moral and ethical leaders of today and tomorrow in order to create a favorable environment for the personal and professional development of Project RightChoice members.

“Leadership and Character Development Through the Framework

of Social Action and Civic Engagement”

Inaugural Leadership Initiative Conference
August 14, 2010

The question and answer portion of the session allowed RightChoice members to ask for advice most relevant to their lives and the challenges the organization itself faces.  Mr. Begor provided insight into how to keep colleagues motivated, methods of keeping members involved while away on off-terms, suggestions on the importance of recruiting, interviewing tips, and much, much more.

The conference was a huge success, and everyone left the event feeling energized about the possibilites for growth and development that lay ahead not only for the organization but also for the individuals in attendance.  The Leadership Initiative will hopefully become a mainstay for Project RightChoice in the future as we plan to hold a Leadership Initiative Conference each term on campus.  Be sure to check back for information on our Second Leadership Conference in the fall!

Topic: Corporate Leadership At General Electric

Speaker: Mark Begor, President and CEO of GE Capital, Retail Finance and Restructuring Operations

On August 14th, 2010, Project RightChoice hosted its first ever Leadership Initiative Conference.  The event began with a presentation by Project RightChoice President, Craig Fitzgerald ’11, highlighting the successes as well as the challenges of our first year. Our advisors and guests in attendance gave critical feedback and advice that will strengthen our relations with our partnering charities and our strategies approaching our events in 2011.

Following the discussion, the Leadership Initiative commenced with a presentation from Mark Begor, President and CEO of GE Capital, Retail Finance and Restructuring Operations.  He spoke about corporate leadership focusing on his 30 years of experience in various leadership roles at General Electric.  Specifically, his talk drew attention to the unique structure and culture of General Electric, which emphasizes training and promoting leaders from within.  An entire campus in Crotonville, NY is devoted to training GE’s employees, supplementing the practical training of experience on the job.

Fall Leadership Conference
December 2, 2010

Topic: Leadership in Entrepreneurship

Speaker: John Pepper, CEO and Co-Founder of Boloco

On December 2nd, 2010, Project RightChoice held its second-ever Leadership Conference, hearing from John Pepper, Co-Founder and CEO of Boloco (, a Boson-based restaurant chain.  Boloco opened its first restaurant in 1997 and since then has opened sixteen restaurant locations in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont.  By year-end 2011, Boloco expects to open five more restaurants, including its first restaurant outside of New England.  In addition to Boloco, Mr. Pepper also co-founded and is a board member of b.good (, a 7-unit better-for-you burger restaurant based in Boston.

John Pepper graduated from Dartmouth College in 1991 and received his MBA from the Amos Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College in 1997 (where the first Boloco business plan was written as part of his Entrepreneurship class)!  He currently is a member of the Alumni Council of Dartmouth College and serves as a Board Member of Community Servings (Boston non-profit meal delivery service) and the Farmer’s Diner (organic/local food-focused diner concept based in VT). 

John Pepper spoke to Project RightChoice about “Leadership in Entrepreneurship,” discussing how his experiences in selling cleaning products and knives for Chemed Corporation and Cutco Cutlery and his four years at Johnson & Johnson helped him to develop the skills necessary to start his own business.  Mr. Pepper talked about the importance of developing a passionate vision and being able to articulate that vision to those around you.  Mr. Pepper also spoke about the importance of seeking feedback.  Customer feedback is a key aspect of the Boloco business plan, allowing Boloco to continue to meet the needs of its loyal customers.

Overall, the second Leadership Conference was very successful.  Mr. Pepper has sparked conversation among Project RightChoice members about the importance of developing and maintaining Project RightChoice’s own spirit of entrepreneurship as we continue to grow and develop as an organization in the future!

Spring Leadership Conference
April 17, 2011

Topic: Leadership and Professional Societies

Speaker: Dr. Shawn Kelley, Region I Governor of the American Society of Civil Engineers

On April 17, 2011, Project RightChoice hosted its Spring Leadership Conference, hearing from Dr. Shawn Kelley, Region I Governor of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).  Dr. Kelley discussed leadership in professional societies and how professional societies have direct impacts on our everyday lives.  Dr. Kelley has been heavily involved with the American Society of Civil Engineers, a professional society that promotes the Civil Engineering profession.  Civil engineering is the design and maintenance of public works such as roads, bridges, water and energy systems as well as public facilities like ports, railways and airports.  Civil engineers touch many aspects of our everyday lives - from the water we use to brush our teeth to the road we drive on to work. 

ASCE leads many initiatives that promote Civil Engineering including technical, educational, legislative, and volunteering efforts.  Technical leadership involves publishing the Civil Engineering research being done at leading universities as well as the promotion of technical institutes, which serve as knowledge bases for practitioners.  Educational leadership comes from providing life long learning opportunities for engineers and creating K-12 outreach programs that inform students, educators, and the general

public about the important role of civil engineering.  Legislative leadership includes spending time with local, state, and federal legislators and informing them of the importance of funding infrastructure projects.  Volunteering leadership includes our partnership with Engineers without Borders (EWB).  From water filtration and energy solutions to bringing irrigation to promote crop growth in some of the world's poorest areas, ASCE's partnership with EWB-USA involves the implementation of sustainable engineering projects, using ASCE's Code of Ethics to promote the highest engineering standards while involving and training internationally responsible engineers and engineering students.

After shedding light on the important role that professional societies, particularly the ASCE, play in society, Dr. Kelley opened up for questions from Project RightChoice members.  Dr. Kelley was able to provide a unique perspective on engineering, legislation and his own role as a leader in professional societies.

Dr. Kelley graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a Bachelors Degree in Civil Engineering in 1994.  He received his Masters of Science degree in Geotechnical Engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 1997 and his Doctor of Philosophy in Geotechnical Engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2003.  He was a project engineer with GeoDesign Inc. in their Connecticut and Vermont offices from 2001 to 2004 and he is currently an Associate with GeoDesign Inc. in their Windsor, Vermont office.  He is a Past-President of the Vermont Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers and is currently a Region 1 Governor of ASCE.

Past Events: