Learning to Lead with Grit

I know that our students are often from one thing to the next. Which is why the Dean’s Leadership Program will meet for one hour a week for six weeks. During this time we will share leadership lessons, engage in group discussion, and plan for our futures together.


Don’t worry about embarrassing icebreakers! In our first session together, we will go over our expectations of one another, the program as well as get to know one another. While I have some idea of where we will be heading during the program, I want to make sure that you have a chance to influence our future lessons. This is why you will offer some insights on where gaps in your leadership development exist and how we might improve them.

Spring 2019 Date: Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Can I let you in on a little secret? Public speaking was a big challenge for me for many years. But what I learned from a mentor early in my career is that the great work you do needs to be matched by the way you connect with others. Today, I give dozens of speeches each year, lead meetings, and work 1:1 with students, faculty, and staff. This week we will discuss what communication in a leadership setting really looks like, tips to communicate effectively, and ways that we can match our actions with our words.

Spring 2019 Date: Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Each year I read dozens of books about courageous individuals. I love discovering how leaders throughout history found the strength to keep going and to make decisions with integrity and determination. I also find myself drawn to selfless courage and to stories about how students overcame something big in their lives. Courage and vulnerability can take many different forms and in week 3, we will explore how courage works in our day-to-day lives, how to recognize it, and how to apply it in the future.

Spring 2019 Date: Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Prior to becoming the Dean of Students, I was Director of the Career Center here at UF. I had worked for much of my career to help students bridge their past experiences to their career aspirations. During our 4th week, we will examine our own paths for envisioning our futures. What our brand is and how capitalize on it. We will dabble with your resume and explore ways to pitch yourself as you boldly stake your claim for what you want to do beyond UF.

Spring 2019 Date: Wednesday, April 3, 2019

You are bombarded with moments in your life that may challenge you to stop moving forward. What happens when you are faced with hardships? How do you overcome difficulties? As someone aspiring to be a better leader, you will be faced with setbacks. During week 5, we will seek to understand our own power to face challenges, adapt, and bounce back.

Spring 2019 Date: Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Super broad, I know. We have classes and degree programs that focus countless hours to define leadership. During our third week, we will examine what I call the “leadership fundamentals”. What is it? How you create your own leadership path? Why is a commitment to the leadership development of others so important? Lots of bold questions that will require some bold conversations.

Spring 2019 Date: Wednesday, April 17, 2019

I know you are thinking… all of this in just a few short weeks? Yes. What you will learn very quickly about me is that when I am passionate about something, I will work very hard to make it a reality. If you will commit yourself to the program, I will commit myself to making sure that this becomes a stepping stone to whatever leadership aspiration you may have.