Reflecting on the Dominican Tradition
Recently, I attended the biennial Sponsorship Conference for all the institutions sponsored by the Adrian Dominican Sisters. While attending, I had the opportunity to reflect on leadership and what it means to be a university founded in the Dominican tradition.
The following are some of my thoughts:
Because we are part of a Dominican establishment, we are all family, we are all related. Each of us are leaders in our own way. How do we lead? Is anyone following? When St. Dominic formed the Order in 1214, he believed that the Prior of the Order or the Master General should realize that he was the first among equals. That’s also how I think leaders should see themselves today. When we lead, we must be servant-leaders, putting the needs of the institution/organization/community and the people we serve first.
How do we live the mission of Siena Heights University? Many of us have multiple interactions each day. What is the quality of those interactions? Do we speak with respect and listen with interest, or do we dismiss people as well as what they have to offer? Right relationships must be the foundation on which our mission is built. It can’t be assumed. It is an intentional act. If relationships are off-kilter, then it is difficult to sincerely live our mission. Mission is not something to be written on a piece of paper and tucked away. It is something that must live and breathe, grow and deepen each day.