June 28, 2016 | 3 p.m.
By Amanda Cantu, Financial Aid Counselor
The Minnesota Association of Financial Aid Administrators (MAFAA) recently recognized Bethel University Financial Aid Counselors Anita Ostercamp and Amanda Cantu for completing a Leadership Symposium. Cantu wrote about the experience for the MAFAA Matters June/July 2016 newsletter:
My Experience with Leadership Symposium
Trying something new can be a scary thing; at least it is for me. As an introvert, I have to be intentional about going outside my comfort zone to take advantage of opportunities that will help me grow personally and professionally. When I learned about the opportunity to participate in the Leadership Symposium, I was not sure what to expect or if it was something I wanted to do or had the time to do. I was finishing up my last semester of graduate school and didn't know if it was something I could commit to. After hearing my colleagues’ experiences, I decided to apply. I am glad I did.
The program provided me with more than an opportunity to develop leadership skills. It gave me the opportunity to learn about topics I am passionate about and develop skills to further my professional growth. Most importantly, it gave me the opportunity to get to know others in the financial aid profession and what excites them. We have some very talented people in our organization and this program helped me get to know a few I might not have otherwise gotten to know. As someone who is just starting in the profession, I feel it is important to develop relationships with others in the organization. The Leadership Symposium provided an intimate way to do so. It can be overwhelming to meet the many members of MAFAA at events, but when you are able to bring a few members together, it can make meeting others much more enjoyable and less overwhelming.
The most enjoyable part of my Leadership Symposium experience was working in a group. As part of the program, we had to give a group presentation. Although forming the group was random, I feel my group members and I were meant to present together. We spent much time working on our project at a local Perkins restaurant which gave us the opportunity to really get to know each other on a more personal and professional level. Even though the program has come to an end, I know we will forever be connected by this experience.