News from the Bush School

Graduates Recognized for Dean’s Leadership Certificate, Medal of Excellence

May 18, 2020

Fifty-one Bush School students received the Dean’s Leadership Certificate following the ’19-’20 academic school year, and fourteen of those earned the Bush School’s prestigious Medal of Excellence. Both the certificate and the medal are earned by students who put in extra work to hone their leadership, communication, and professional skills.

“Pursuing the Medal of Excellence and the Dean’s Leadership Certificate has helped me realize my potential by encouraging me to dig deep and articulate the value of my life experiences,” International Affairs graduate Eric Washington said. “Working to attain the commendations allowed me to see my professional and academic experiences as more than just designations on a resume. They are also moments in my life in which I was able to exercise specific skills that can be valuable in the job market.”

In order to receive the Dean’s Leadership Certificate, students are required to develop an individual leadership plan examining their personal vision, values, knowledge, skills, and professional attributes. Each student must demonstrate a commitment to life-long learning and leadership development through experiential learning activities and a series of leadership workshops.

Students receiving the Medal of Excellence completed the requirements for the Dean’s Leadership Certificate and demonstrated higher-order thinking and writing skills, including complex-problem solving, critical thinking, teamwork, and leadership, acquired through graduate-level coursework and field experiences and documented in a competency-based portfolio. Each portfolio has undergone rigorous reviews and revisions until it meets the high standards of writing and development expected for the award.

“The workshops required for the Leadership Certificate taught me about my strengths and weaknesses based on my personality identifiers,” Public Service and Administration graduate Rayna Willenbrink said. “Concepts learned in a course, such as how to write an effective memorandum, have already proven to be useful skills as I begin to navigate my career.”

In lieu of the ceremony usually held to honor their achievements and present their awards, this year students were recognized at the School’s virtual graduation held on May 7.