I love my job. I recently had the opportunity to attend two events and was able to be up close and personal with two of the University System of New Hampshire's (USNH) presidents—and this does not include the one I work for.
Each venue was different in topic and setting. After listening to each of the president’s messages, one passage was the same. “We are only given 6% of our budget from the State. Essentially, we run like a private school.” Could that have been planned? No, I seriously doubt College Presidents call each other the night before about wearing the same tie color or chat about the same message to give (that’s what Politicians do!). The message was said both times without judgment. It’s just a fact.
What impresses me most about working for this 31,000 student and 6,000 employee university system is that collegiality and respect runs rampant. For me, working for Granite State College’s relatively new graduate programs, I get a positive affirmation from a colleague almost each time I meet someone new. We are free to collaborate, explore, expand and discover the talents that each institution has that could benefit a sister school, and our voices are heard when we speak of ideas and change. Here, the equation is 1 + 1 = 3. Yes, you get more when you work together with excellence in leadership with what you have.
The more I thought about this academic environment I call my professional home, I began to realize that we also teach our students how we behave, or even better, what we believe. The collegiality in the USNH parallels the Granite State College Master of Science in Leadership. In part, the pedagogy behind our program in leadership comes from scholar Joe Raelin's Four C’s of Leadership: Collective, Concurrent, Collaborative and Compassionate. We are collective, which means that we can all serve as leaders, and can be heard. Concurrent is the thought that we can all have a say; a contribution is an important part of the process. Collaboratively, we all work together and engage in dialogue. And lastly, we have compassion, which preserves the dignity of everyone on the team, especially when an action is taken.
At GSC and our sister institutions, we practice this on a daily basis. Collectively, we work together coming up with solutions and ideas that serve the greater good of our students and our community—including our sister institutions. Concurrently, we are free to have leadership at all levels in our institutions—we are all important members. Collaboratively, we work together until a mutual idea is brought forth and found to be the best solution. And, we are compassionate through our humble nature. We don’t gloat. We worked together.
At Granite State College, our graduate programs' philosophy is to teach what you practice.