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Abstract
Connecting with the Millennial Generation can be challenging, as this generation is often described as unmotivated, incoherent and lazy. Servant leadership focuses on placing the needs of the follower before the needs of the leader, and empowers followers to take ownership for their efforts. Implementing quality mentorship through the lens of servant leadership could be a missing link to connecting purpose to content in college classrooms. The study describes first-semester students’ perceptions of servant leadership in personal mentors at the beginning and end of the Fall 2014 Freshmen Orientation course in the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources at Oklahoma State University. Students rated accountability and empowerment as the highest servant leadership traits desired in their personal mentors in both the pre-and post-evaluations. The study yielded the following recommendations: Higher education institutions should develop student leadership groups around desired servant leadership qualities, such as accountability and empowerment; implement projects and assignments in classroom settings allowing students to take ownership of personal work; and investigate the influence of servant leadership in various college student settings. As the needs of college students evolve, the need to embrace student ownership and service in higher education programs becomes imperative.
 
 
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