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Key Executive Leadership Program

My Key Certificate Experience

We learned so much during our year at AU and when you return to your position and get involved in the crisis and everyday grind, you can easily forget the commitment you made to yourself to put into practice what you learned, and/or to conduct yourself differently. [A Leadership Journey: Celebrating USDA SES CDP Alumni and Student Successes] forum was a terrific reminder of what we learned and our need to continually grow. Also, hearing about the experience of current SES members was invaluable. Overall, it was a great day.
-Comment from a USDA Key Executive Leadership Certificate Graduate

Shortly after graduation, I interviewed for an SES position and was selected for the job. The Key Executive Leadership Certificate Program course material greatly helped me in thinking through the leadership issues related to this position, and in preparing for my interviews. I believe that what I learned through the Key Program played a significant role in my selection for this position. Thank you!
-Jay Variyam, Director, Food Economics Division, Economic Research Service, USDA (Key/USDA SES CDP Graduate)

I know that I have been changed and invigorated by this exceptional program and experience. I am even more committed to taking on the challenges facing my agency and the people we serve and am willing to step up to the plate as a leader who is equipped with better skills than before to assist our colleagues in achieving my agency's mission.
-Comment from Key Executive Leadership Certificate Graduate

The AU courses, 360 evaluation, and coaching sessions have been very rewarding...I was skeptical at first. In retrospect, it was a grand learning and growing experience. I've had several compliments from my staff and peers in the last several months on how I have 'changed' over the past year. I have a renewed appreciation and perspective on this leadership concept.
-Comment from USDA Key Executive Leadership Certificate Graduate

This program is TERRIFIC. Extraordinary leaders develop those around them to become extraordinary leaders.
-Comment from a Key Executive Leadership Certificate graduate.

This is an excellent developmental opportunity for individuals with leadership aspirations. AU's program shows individuals who are managers and technical experts how to become extraordinary leaders through introspection of one's interpersonal communications style, analysis of best practices in leading people and leading change, and exposure to a cohort of Federal practitioners all striving toward a better Federal workforce.
-Comment from a Key Executive Leadership Certificate graduate.

The Program challenged our assumptions and helped us form clear distinctions between leadership and management,how each of us approached working with others, and managing change. For me, it was an affirmation that helping others to see possibilities would lead to having them create the structures to get things accomplished.
-Comment from a Key Executive Leadership Certificate graduate.

It was a very comprehensive leadership program. Although it required a personal commitment on Saturdays, my time was well spent – excellent class materials and resources, a variety of instructors, self-assessment tools, coaching, and rich classroom discussions representing a mix of federal agencies.
-Comment from a Key Executive Leadership Certificate graduate.

[The Key Executive Leadership Certificate Program] provided learning opportunities that were strategically scheduled, allowing the participants a variety of experiences. Regardless of the stage in one’s Federal career, this cohort experience affords the opportunity to embark upon a new journey toward becoming an extraordinary leader.
-Comment from a Key Executive Leadership Certificate graduate.

I think this course...really goes to the heart of the leadership curriculum. I will apply these concepts to all the other courses as well as my workplace and career.
-Comment from Key Executive Leadership Certificate program participant after Dr. Don Zauderer's class, Transforming from Managing to Leading.

Excellent class discussions generated by the cases used as examples. Also, the hypotheticals were good to stimulate thinking relevant to our jobs.
-Comment from Key Executive Leadership Certificate program participant after Prof. Elaine Kaplan's class, Leading in the Context of Constitutional Government.

The material was absolutely on-target and timely; practical knowledge for our environment today. It broadened my thinking.
-Comment from Key Executive Leadership Certificate program participant after Dr. Robert Marshak's class, Leading Organizational Change to Improve Results.

As a result of this program, [our participant] has developed a broader understanding of how the agency fits into the broader scheme of government. This understanding has led to a better appreciation of how [the program] needs to be managed.
-Comment from the supervisor of a graduate of the Key Executive Leadership Certificate Program.

I learned from my Cohort members that the problems I face are the problems they face.
-Comment from Key Executive Leadership Certificate Program participant in Prof. Robert Tobias’s class.

I found that I developed a group of colleagues who I have depended on for help well past when we graduated.
-Comment from graduate at a Key Executive Leadership Certificate reunion luncheon.

These last six months have provided me a framework for seeking and dealing with change. [This program] has mad a difference in my leadership and personal life, and I know it will change the lives of future participants.
-Remarks from a Key Executive Leadership Certificate graduate.

As a result of this program, [our participant] has developed a broader understanding of how the agency fits into the broader scheme of government. This understanding has made [our participant] a better manager and leader.
-Comment from the supervisor of a Key Executive Leadership Certificate graduate.