The UI College of Pharmacy Genesis Board — young alumni who provide opportunities to facilitate student success — and the Zada Cooper Leadership Symposium Committee — a group that honors pioneer Zada Mary Cooper by offering leadership programming — collaborated together to offer virtual programming earlier this month.
Students, faculty, staff, practitioners, alumni, and university colleagues met online daily for a week to listen and share experiences about resilience, leading in times of uncertainty, building and strengthening workplace teams, and persevering.
The series, titled "We Got This! Conversations to Make Connections," included web-based sessions that discussed:
- Grit and Resilience in the Struggle, was hosted by Nicole Brogden, '07 PharmD, assistant professor at the UI College of Pharmacy; and Brianne Bakken, '15 PharmD, assistant professor at the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) School of Pharmacy. The hosts discussed how it is important to maintain a sense of strength and resilience when everything feels harder and your emotional stores are depleting.
- The Blind Leading the Blind: Strength in Numbers, was hosted by Kelly Brock, '02 PharmD, chair of the Genesis Board; along with other members. Trying to be a leader is immensely challenging when we find ourselves in situations with little or no guidance. How do you lead when you feel uncertain yourself? One way is to build and strengthen relationships with people who bring out our best and support us in our struggles.
- Conversation over Coffee: Building High-Performance Working Relationships, was hosted by Michele Williams, assistant professor of Management and Entrepreneurship in the Tippie College of Business. Fear, stress, and anger have become almost a daily part of work. Trust is the key to collaborative relationships — it increases information sharing, helping behavior, responsiveness, and flexibility.
- Zada Pride: Moving Forward, was hosted by Melissa Murer Corrigan, adjunct assistant professor, Nicole Brogden, and Kelly Brock, all affiliated with the UI College of Pharmacy. Collectively we have all survived and struggled through half of a semester of virtual instruction and more "firsts" than we were ready for. Discussion included how to propel forward using the life of the first female professor in the college, Zada Cooper, as an example. Specifically, participants — including Metta Lou Henderson, Cooper's biographer — talked about how to maintain a sense of pride, excitement, and teamwork. Click here for a written declaration sheet.