Seven Auburn Montgomery employees recently graduated as part of Class V of the EMERGE Montgomery Torchbearers program. Congratulations to Laura Chambliss, Si (Joyce) Chen, Kenya Howard, Ramona Hurston, Na Li, Jessica Regan and Max Stewart.
| AUM graduates of EMERGE Montgomery Torchbearers Class V. |
From left to right: Na Li, Laura Chambliss, Ramona Hurston, Max Stewart, Kenya Howard and Jessica Regan. Not pictured - Si Chen.
Torchbearers is designed to equip young professionals, under 40, with the skills and connections to become community leaders. After learning through the EMERGE curriculum, students should have an increased awareness of problems and concerns in the community, assets and resources available, potential solutions and strategies for becoming more involved. The intended result is a larger pool of young professionals who will remain in the River Region to serve the community.
Howard wasn’t sure what to expect when she was selected to enter the program, but after a little encouragement from coworkers who had been through it, she jumped in and was pleasantly surprised.
“It turned out to be a great experience and I am glad I did it,” Howard said. “I learned a multitude of things that I can use to enhance both my personal and professional life.”
Howard said she learned about the challenges the River Region faces and how she can help overcome them. She said she learned about team building, managing conflict in a way that produces positive outcomes, recognizing her own strengths and weaknesses, and leading by example.
“I think the best thing is the professional relationships you build with all the different people you meet in class,” said Howard. “The classes are diverse, so it is a great opportunity to learn about each other’s backgrounds. The class really stresses the importance of team work and how working together as one unit helps to foster an environment of success, both in the workplace and life in general.
“I would definitely recommend this class to anyone that just wants to step out of their comfort zone, learn about themselves, learn about what it takes to be a leader, and learn how they can be more involved in helping their community. We all have ideas, but it is nicer to feel like you have a voice.”