"I have grown tremendously in my ability to recognize leadership opportunities, to manage up, and to know more about myself."
Why did you choose to earn an M.S. in Management and Leadership?
As a Los Angeles police officer, this program fits right into what I do here in the department. Earning an MBA would be great, but in terms of my job, management and leadership are a large part of what I do. When I looked at both programs, the MS in Management and Leadership was the one that really spoke to me.
How has the program changed you?
Returning to school was an opportunity for me to grow as a person. Over the last 18 months, I have grown tremendously in my ability to recognize leadership opportunities, to manage up, and to know more about myself. I am now able to identify my strengths and weaknesses, and hone in and work on both not just at school but at work as well.
And there is so much knowledge that crosses over from the classroom to the workplace. One example is learning to handle conflict. As part of the program, we focus on what can lead to conflict, such as certain cultural dimensions and group dynamics. It is important to me to understand what causes conflict and how to navigate through the issues and talk about them in the open. The ability to bring that knowledge back to my workplace was definitely a benefit.
What would you tell others about the Graziadio School?
I definitely would recommend the Graziadio School and its MS in Management and Leadership program. It goes back to the core question of what drives companies: people or numbers. This program focuses on people. If you can manage people, you can manage projects and organizations.
The program is challenging, especially when you're working full-time and have a family like me. But it is a valuable experience, in part due to the quality of people in your classes. What speaks volumes is that everyone put in the maximum effort in my cohort. For these people, the program is really about trying to grow as leaders. As result, it made my learning experience interesting and fun.