When Learning Is A Lifelong Journey

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When Learning Comes to Life John F. Kennedy regularly stated that, “learning and leadership are indispensable to one another” (Smith & Murray, 2002). This brief but poignant statement points to the fact that effective leaders are constantly learning; their education, both through formal and informal channels, is a lifelong journey, rather than a destination. Serving as a Director in my organization while completing coursework toward my Master’s degree from Palm Beach Atlantic University’s Catherine T. MacArthur School of Leadership has provided me with a leadership laboratory, one that simultaneously provides opportunities for daily learning and leading. Leadership, both in theory and in practice, can be observed, evaluated, and understood within these two distinctly different environments. Now, over halfway through this graduate degree program, the path that remains still in front of me is shorter than the one already behind me. The last 12 months of studies have caused significant change to the way that I view myself, others around me, and the world as a whole. Personally, I have experienced immense growth as a leader. Specifically, I have noticed growth in the five attributes of Goleman’s (1998) emotional intelligence: self-awareness, self-regulation, internal motivation, empathy, and social skills. Additionally, I have continued to develop my cultural intelligence, or ability to discern how culture and heritage influences individuals’ thoughts, perceptions, priorities,
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