Ashley Carter, director of alumni and constituent engagement. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)

A​ ​Place​ ​that​ ​Values​ ​Leadership

Leadership is the art of guiding others to deliberately create a result that wouldn’t happen otherwise.

What does it mean to be a leader? A leader has many characteristics. A few that come to mind are honesty, confidence, communication, respect, authenticity and focus. Everyone can be a leader, but not everyone is a great leader. John Quincy Adams wrote, “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”

In my time as a student at Brenau University, I was taught many skills that would mold me into who I am today. I was taught to seek my passions and dreams, serve others, show compassion, have confidence, earn respect, stay focused, always be honest and exhibit integrity. Some believe leaders are born with traits that guide them. Others believe leaders are taught a set of skills. It is most likely a mixture of both, but is anyone truly born a great leader? The answer is no. People are born with traits that may help to make them a leader, but they must be taught and molded to be great.

At Brenau University, we believe that each student and alumnus has the potential to be a great leader. Many of you have already reached a level of leadership in your world–maybe in your career or in a volunteer role. It is now our responsibility as alumni to guide and teach our current students and provide them the opportunities to be great leaders in their own worlds. Since 1878, women (and now men) have come to Brenau to learn fearlessness, leadership and the skills they need to have successful and rewarding careers.

For decades Brenau faculty and staff have been dedicated to helping us all reach our full potential. I am grateful for my time at Brenau in both undergraduate and graduate school. I can truly say that Brenau helped to mold me into the leader I am today. I hope you can say the same. As alumni, we can all be grateful that Brenau taught us the importance of leadership and gave us opportunities to lead.

Ashley M. Carter, WC ’09, BU ‘12
Director of Alumni & Constituent Engagement /770.534.6164

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