The Sustainable Impact of the Sullivan Retreat

By Ali Zaid, Rollins College Business Management and Economics student 

Even though it has been more than two months since I attended the Sullivan Ignite Retreat, I still feel the impact this experience has made on both my personal and professional life. The Sullivan Retreat was not only for business students or psychology students, it was for any students who want to change the world and make it a better place.   The Retreat facilitators created activities that worked for attendees of all different perspectives, and the way the activities proceeded was amazing to witness.  I think this experience was encouraging, since the tools learned from the activities can be applied to any situation, making them very beneficial.


My participation in the Sullivan Retreat made me more proactive. For instance, once I returned to Orlando, I started to meet people who had previously attended the retreat, and ask for their guidance. I made arrangements to attend conferences on campus to meet like-minded people, a key part of any success story, and I began to look for opportunities around me to actively pursue.  After my participation in the retreat, I realized that opportunities can be made, as well as found, which made me think twice about complained when things didn’t go the way I planned.  I did not have this encouragement and confidence before my participation in the Sullivan Retreat, and I’m thankful I was chosen for this great experience.

Facilitators at the retreat emphasized the importance of having hands-on experience and to be self-educated about the profession we want to pursue.  I have always believed that self-education is more important than formal education. However, the conversations I had with attendees at the retreat made me realize that both self and formal education are key in any self-development and both should be given high priority.  Formal education can guide us and help us discover our passions by taking a variety of classes during college.  After the two years, self-education should be given more priority since we have more of an idea of our goals in life.


All in all, the experience at the Sullivan Ignite Retreat was unique. This was my first-time participating in a retreat, and it will not be the last. I believe attending more of these amazing retreats help students and educators discover their interests and build upon them. It also helps those who are on self-development journeys by the exchanging of opinions and ideas.




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