Monday, July 28, 2014

The Roots of a Tree

At 8:05 AM this morning, I walked to Bagel Gourmet, a small and comfy shop serving fresh oven baked bagels. For breakfast, I had a lightly toasted warm sesame bagel with chive cream cheese. The location was three blocks from Perkins dormitory headed in the direction of Thomas J. Watson Sr. Center for Information Technology building, where my Women and Leadership class is located. It was drizzling outside at random times, but the weather did not stop me from my cheery mood. A pink umbrella Don lent me came in handy, when water droplets fell from the swaying tree branches above me. Now that I look back at it, I walked to class with much upbeat and confidence that I did not know was held within me. Arriving to class 30 minutes earlier, came with benefits as choosing a desk in the front of the room, having the opportunity of talking to my professor Dean Almandrez and preparing for class.

The first question Dean Almandrez asked us was, "What is leadership?" We responded with: "taking charge, a position, working with others, figuring the next step." Next we split into groups of three or more, and was asked to name exemplary leaders. Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Ghandi, Maya Angelou, Michelle Obama, Malala Yousafazai, and Hillary Clinton were all named. Dean Almandrez asked us, "Why did we not name ourselves?" Did we have to famous and have followers to be an exemplary leader? Of course not, but many of us relate some leaders with these specific qualities. What I would try to always remember from Dean Almandrez was what she stated to us in class discussion," Leaders can be followers and followers can take leadership roles". It keeps coming up in discussions that learning how to be an avid listener are one of the first steps of taking on leadership. Dean Almandrez presented to us three components of leadership: it is a process, it is relational and it is based on the common good. Learning that leadership is a process, helps me reflect that no one starts off as a leader in the beginning, and we can all take on leadership roles in some way. A leader is dedicated and inspirational. After discussion, we all made individual posters on what life events motivated us to be learning at Brown University's Women and Leadership class.

We had three options of workshop choices for today. I chose the Action Plan Workshop from 4-6:00 PM, so I can get advise and more time on our Action Plan. I am working with Cynthia and Maria on the same Action Plan centered at our high school. Isabella Betita, a Leader Fellow, a TA for Women and Leadership, and RA was present to help me organize my ideas for our collaborative Action Plan. She taught me the 'Tree diagram', a drawing of a tree with as many branches and roots.
    In the middle the tree, was the focus problem, our Action Plan would solve. The branches are the growth and outcome of the focus problem. Roots of the tree is where our problem thrives. With dedication, working towards a common purpose, hard work and collaboration, our Action Plan can succeed.

1 comment:

  1. Great topic for you focus problem. I love seeing you grow, explore and push yourself your boundaries :) Keep it up!