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Leadership Expectations Have Changed

Organizations that survived the pandemic had to address and meet new expectations amongst their employees; for example many wish to maintain the ability to work from anywhere, communicate digitally, address social change, and remain innovative. The companies who continued to thrive during COVID often already had cultures of resiliency and innovation which they were, quite simply, able to put to work. 

In a recent study done by the AACSB, the results echoed this, 1 

“Respondents believe leadership skills such as openness, empathy, resilience, and the ability to communicate will be of greater importance post-crisis. Pre-pandemic,13 percent would have pointed to resilience as a necessary leadership skill; post-pandemic, that number increases to 34 percent. Other front-runner competencies that will help leaders navigate the new normal are core humane skills such as altruism and mindfulness, according to respondents.” 

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Lessons I’m Glad I Now Know

As I set down the book of my Juniata Experience, I reflect on the many lessons I gleaned over my four years at Juniata College. From graduating with an individualized Program of Emphasis to coming to terms with being a student-athlete throughout COVID-19, here are some lessons I’ve learned at JC.

Don’t fret about what comes next. Even during my first year, there were students who had clear plans about what they wanted to do after graduation – going to law school, medical school, teaching or more. By my junior and senior year even more of my peers had plans set in stone. I was different. Sitting at my desk for hours each week brainstorming ideas, I still didn’t feel that same drive to commit to some idea of who I want to be that I wasn’t fully on board with. It wasn’t until my last semester of college that same drive to decide finally came. It’s okay not to know what awaits you after Juniata, but once something motivating jumps out, make sure to grab on to that next adventure and hold on tight!

Motivation can come from anywhere. This lesson I learned from the journey leading up to my next adventure after college. I’ve vacationed outside the US before, but never lived elsewhere for an extended period of time. When COVID-19 crushed my opportunity to study Communications abroad in Germany in Summer 2020, I felt even more motivated to travel overseas. I briefly held out hope that a reprieve would come in the form of a trip to Brazil for my men’s volleyball team to play in a preseason tournament my final semester. Not surprisingly, even that was postponed. In the winter when I was given the chance to continue both my academic and athletic career by getting a Master’s Degree in England, I immediately jumped on the opportunity. Although the decision was my own, the opportunity given to me came thanks to the complete higher education experience that I underwent at Juniata. And, the motivation driving my leap of faith to move overseas to earn an MA was thanks to the strong encouragement to study abroad and opportunities for travel at Juniata that I was sad to have missed.

Live in the moment was the most important lesson I learned from Juniata. When people told me freshman year that four years will pass in the blink of an eye, I had no idea what they meant. It wasn’t possible then for me to see that one day soon, I would be walking across the stage to pick up my diploma, saying so long to the halls of BAC and having an especially sentimental final meal at Baker. It’s sad when the chapter titled ‘College’ in the book of our lives closes but part of living in my new present means living with our connection to Juniata.

As an alumni I expect to stay connected with both the lessons learned and people met through my alma mater. And when it’s your turn to leave the nest, I hope you don’t forget your eagle family either.

Addendum: “I Worked On a Senior’s Capstone Film”

Daniel Muleady
Daniel Muleady ’22, Multimedia Production and Analysis POE, My Mom Thinks I’m Special

The editing crew ended up spending a lot of nights grinding out the rest of the project to make sure that it could be completed in time for the Creators Club film night (if you want to watch the final product along with the many other great films that were premiered at this incredible event, you can watch the lineup here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DMRXshcDiwQ).

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Choosing A Graduate Program on Flexibility and Quality

Juniata Admission
Juniata Admission

Choosing a graduate program can be a daunting experience, especially in recent months. One of the critical factors is where applicants are in life (continuing student, married with kids). Students moving from undergrad to graduate often have an easier decision, choosing to stay at their current institute or guided by professors or future employers to select a specific program. For those who have been out of school for a few years, or even a decade or two, the vetting process (and ultimate decision) can be a bit more daunting. We often find flexibility, cost, time commitment (due to current work schedules and family), and culture are the top reasons for Juniata to be their final selection.

Despite recent challenges facing education, people continue to have career and leadership goals moving them to pursue graduate degrees.

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My Thoughts on Liberal Arts Symposium

Rebecca Case
Rebecca Case ’22, Professional Writing POE, Currently listening to whatever song is stuck in my head

Liberal Arts Symposium, or LAS, is often called the Mountain Day of the Mind, and is a day where classes are cancelled so that students can present their academic projects that they have been working on over the academic year. Students are free to listen in on any presentation or to browse the posters that their peers have made. It’s a wonderful day to absorb exciting information and to appreciate all of the work that Juniata students have accomplished over the academic year!

I’m a junior, and I was unfortunately unable to go to LAS my freshman year. However, during my sophomore year, I was able to present one of my research papers for a class called The Metaverse, under the communications department. While this was an incredible experience, this year I was even more excited because it was the first year that I was able to fully enjoy listening in on some of the presentations.

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