The Leadership Rockwall Class of 2022 attended a special program this month here in Rockwall. The cohort participated in a program called “SIMSOC,” which is a societal simulation that involves being placed in a virtual community of people with a variety of resources and needs. The purpose is to emulate society and all the struggles that come with it. Some of the cohort began the program as unemployed and without access to transportation while others began with thriving businesses and money in the bank. The simulated economy reacted to many factors including the employment rate, business capital invested, taxation, social programs, civil unrest, and much more.
For many of the participants, the experience was eye-opening. The lucky members of the group who started the simulation with lots of resources struggled to bridge the gap to communicate and work effectively to align wants and needs with the members who started with little to no resources. Two factions became adversarial and several participants were “arrested” within the simulation, including the sitting head of the judicial branch of the government and the head of the leading political party! The group later determined that poor communication was the root of the strife. This sounds familiar, right?
Despite the conflicts that emerged, the society as a whole survived the simulation (not all groups do!) and the final metrics indicated a thriving and improving society. Unemployment was low, reinvestment in the community was high, and the group finished as friends with a new and profound respect for the struggles our society faces in the real world.
It was a very intense day and the cohort can’t help but wonder what Leadership Rockwall has in store for us next!
Leadership Rockwall was founded in 1997 and is a comprehensive training experience for community members seeking to play a more active role in leadership and communities. The purpose of the program, as outlined by the Chamber, is…
- To develop awareness of the Rockwall County area – its strengths, challenges, and opportunities.
- To enhance leadership abilities.
- To create a network of informed, concerned leaders.
- To encourage greater involvement in the community.
Thank you to the sponsors of this year’s Leadership Rockwall program:
Baylor Scott & White Medical Center Lake Pointe | All Care Comfort Solutions | Oncor | Republic Services | Southwest Kia Rockwall