August 18 , 2004
CSUMB dean's generosity is a life
I am a new student at California State University, Monterey
Bay, and very enthused about it because I see that the
faculty members' interest in their students starts
even before the new school year has begun.
Just today I conferred with
a dean who offered to meet with me individually to help
me develop the right schedule for my classes. I was thrilled.
How does this generous action
by a dean speak to the integrity of leadership at this
Learning at your new school, CSUMB, has already begun
for you, and you have not yet enrolled in your first
class. When the dean of an academic institution will
make the time to offer personal help, there is an important
message being sent: namely, that people are important.
When leaders of an organization make themselves accessible
to those who most need them, which in this instance is
a first-year student, then the values are clear: Students
really do matter, and relationships between student and
instructor are valued. Certainly, when you chose to write
your question to "Integrity Matters" you
recognized the graciousness of the dean's gesture
and generosity of the offer.
Graciousness, one of the Bracher Center's Eight
Attributes of an Integrity-Centered Organization, combines
respect and discipline. In this situation you are the
recipient of care and concern as you make your way into
your new academic home, CSUMB.
A few months ago I invested time listening carefully
to youngsters from 8 to 18 at the Boys and Girls Clubs
of Monterey County, as they defined our Eight Attributes
of Integrity. On the subject of graciousness, Attribute
No. 8, they were very clear. The children said that in
order to be gracious one needed to be kind, not cruel
or sarcastic - thoughtful, not judging, these young people
felt they and others could better listen to and learn
Further, these members of the Boys and Girls Clubs reminded
me - and hopefully all of us - of how important it is
to be patient, allowing others to finish their thoughts.
And then they added: Be helpful, not harmful, and to
be sure to remember that we are all more alike than different.
How great that you have recognized integrity in your
new school home at CSUMB, and may your willingness to
highlight the "graciousness" of a department
head be an inspiration to all of us to lend a hand to
those in need and do so in caring and supportive ways.
Integrity Matters, all the time.