My undergrad education at Simmons University in Boston, Massachusetts taught me that we all have the capacity to be leaders, and with focused attention we can cultivate our natural born resources with methods to become change agents.
1. What does it mean to prepare for leadership?
2. Are we born leaders or can we become a leader?
3. In what way are you a leader in your daily life?
The school's culture with its people, empowering belief systems and enlightened professors all contributed to my early awareness of the leader within me, and how to harness the inner power to do good in the world, to make a difference, and to build a movement around a common purpose. Being a leader does not mean you are the boss, and you might not even be a manager. The President of Simmons University, Lynn Perry Wooten, explores the idea of Everyday Leadership in their new catalogue. She says:
“Leadership is not positional. It’s about how I show up to be my best self and use my strengths and talents to contribute to the world every day.”
Our founder, Sara, did not set out to go to a women’s school but as soon as she landed on this campus for her tour at age 17 she knew it would become her new home. She even applied early decision! Sara says: "In this place I reawakened my voice, I tapped into my entrepreneurial passions, and studied things like The Female Advantage. We were trained to stand tall, to speak up, to bring people together, and never to let anyone tell us we did not have what it takes."
Today we will hear from keynote speakers Brené Brown, Simone Biles, and Amanda Gorman at the 43rd Simmons University Leadership Conference. I am so excited to reconnect with this community, to be inspired and to feel reignited by the gifts that I received so long ago. Thank you Simmons!
(Stay tuned for Part 2 when I provide you with the key leadership traits we discuss today.)