Strengths Academy

Strengths Academy has reached capacity, and registration is now closed.

Strengths Academy is a new training program for individuals interested in becoming WMU Strengths Champions.  Champions will commit to serving First-Year Seminar (FYS) sections in Fall 2019, delivering at least one in-class presentation, and providing 1:1 coaching sessions to FYS students during the fall semester.  Champions will also be an advocate and supporter of Strengths at WMU.  Upon completion of the Academy, Champions will have the skills and materials to present to and coach, not only FYS students, but other students and professionals on campus.

Please note – you will not be recognized as a Gallup-certified Strengths coach by completing this program. Instead, you will be a WMU Strengths Champion and will have the credentials to coach within the WMU campus community.

Faculty, staff, and G.A.’s are invited to register for the summer training program, which will take place May – August.  First-Year Seminar instructors who plan on using Strengths in their sections are highly encouraged to participate in Strengths Academy.

Participants must complete a series of workshops (or one full-day workshop), as well as have their own 1:1 coaching session with a current Champion during the summer.  Additionally, Champions will engage in practice coaching sessions to prepare for student meetings in the fall.  A wrap-up session is scheduled for early December for all Champions to come together and celebrate the accomplishments of the semester.

There is no cost to participate for the inaugural Strengths Academy, however, participants are strongly encouraged to upgrade to their full 34 report for $40.  Sign into your Gallup account for more information on how to complete this.

Training schedule and descriptions

*All training sessions with take place at the MultiCultural Center in Trimpe, unless otherwise noted.

Session 1: Intro to Strengths

The Intro to Strengths presentation is the first building block to understanding Strengths.  This presentation is what is delivered to FYE classes and departments who request a basic Strengths workshop.  If you have attended a Cool Tools Strengths Discovery workshop, are an FYE instructor who used Strengths in your section, or have participated in another Intro to Strengths workshop, you do not need to attend this session and may begin Strengths Academy with Session 2.

Date: Wednesday, May 15, 1 – 3 p.m.

Session 2: Advanced Strengths and Theme Dynamics

Continue to gain a deeper understanding of all 34 strengths and the nuances among them. Theme dynamics are always at play; recognize how individual strengths sharpen and soften each other.

Dates: Tuesday, May 21, 9:30 – 11:30 a.m.

            Friday, June 14, 9:30 – 11:30 a.m.

            Monday, July 1, 1 – 3 p.m.

Session 3: Strengths facilitation in groups

Delivering the Intro to Strengths presentation is a key role of being a Strengths Champion. Learn the Intro presentation, and gain knowledge and practice of facilitating Strengths activities in groups. Learn how to address questions and conversations about weaknesses.

Date: Thursday, June 20, 1 – 3 p.m.

Session 4: Strengths in 1:1 conversations

Individual coaching sessions are the catalyst for sparking deeper awareness and understanding of one’s Top 5. Learn coaching techniques and tips for maximum impact.

Date: Thursday, July 18, 9:30 – 11:30 a.m.

 Full-day session: Friday, July 12, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. (one-hour break for lunch on your own)

*must have already participated in an Intro to Strengths session

Thursday, December 5, 2 – 3:30 p.m.: End-of-semester wrap-up/celebration for all Champions


Strengths Champions meet-ups: Bring your lunch and drop in from Noon - 1 p.m. to ask questions and build community with your fellow Strengths Champions. All locations are at the Bernhard Center.

Aug. 21, Faculty Dining Room

Sept. 17, Faculty Dining Room

Oct. 1, Room 106

Oct. 24, Room 107

Nov. 13, Room 107