Leadership Academy

I am a better person and leader because of...

Intro

I can recall many coworkers telling me I was crazy for applying to the academy knowing I would be away from my newborn baby. Many tried to to tell me why they wouldn't go and that I should do the same. I'm glad I did not follow the trend.

Courage

I am a better person and leader because of...


I believe it takes courage to move forward when others would shy away from a challenge. Courage can be defined as the willingness to move forward in the presence of fear. I'm not saying I'm not intimidated by a situation from time to time, but I believe courage is what has brought me on this journey. Being away from my family is really hard. Take my grandfather Joseph Barnhart for example, a German polish immigrant. He was a prisoner of war because he chose not to join the Nazi army. Grandpa barely survived prison on bread and corn if he was lucky. He eventually escaped prison and made the journey to the states. I know that without sacrifice there is no reward and without courage I wouldn't have the opportunity to be here and become the best I can be.

Opportunity

I am a better person and leader because of...


HHSC leadership provided an opportunity to develop our strengths and skills by providing a learning environment to optimize our development. Part of the development has come from the workshops attended, the books that have been read, in class trainings and leadership presentations. I know from previous work experiences that opportunities such as these don't come up very often. The fact that my employer is willing to reinvest in its own staff rather than outsource employment, drives me to be a better person and leader not just for my self but for my State. Mr. Salter told us to "learn to win big by celebrating the small." By applying his quote to my everyday life, personal and business, I have become a better person.
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Camaraderie

I am a better person and leader because of...


There are 25 of us that were selected as the "cream of the crop" from the applicant pool. I can say I was part of the very first leadership academy class, an honor only we can share. The networking and getting to know everyone is so invaluable, I now know I can call my friend Amy Jones if I need some help with a MEPD case. Or I can call Rodrigo Jimenez if I need help creating a program that monitors a program with the help of a special program, because he's the "program guy." I can reach out to my mentor Sandra Dillett for guidance, experience and overall advice on leadership. And of course, I can call Melissa Belmares and Starr Jimenez to join me in Austin TX for another night of fun and Tattoo's.
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conclusion

This Academy can be compared to a college course only it's much more valuable. The lessons learned can be applied immediately and make an impact on our lives. the road to opportunity has been paved for us, its our choice whether we take it.