Picture of students using computers in the library

Sand Shark Inspiration

October 16, 2013

USCB’s mascot of the Sand Shark may be listed as vulnerable to endangerment but the inspiration that breeds itself on campus surely is not. It is just one of the many gifts this school offers and in sharing, I hope you may indulge yourself in this inspiration too.

Dear USCB Leadership Course,

              You did it again… will you marry me?



Well, I am far from being married …but isn’t it what marriage entails? Qualities of leadership: honesty, loyalty, trust, selflessness, responsibility, communicating, being genuine…yes, mustn’t we be on to something here?! Marriage is a relationship, leadership is too, and it takes hard work and dedication. --Wait which one marriage or leadership? ...Yes.

I have come to understand the importance of relationships are as valuable as the people in them. I have come to learn the maintenance of relationships requires not giving up on the hard work and dedication they involve.

This inspiration is the gift of USCB's guest leader to the Leadership in Practice Course: Mark Thomas, the Vice President of Strategic Development for CareCore National. His words, thoughts, and ideas seemed to bleed into my every moment thereafter following their submergence into my mind and heart.

I would like to introduce you to one of these moments:

I caught my peer, Kara Kamperman sitting at what I have deemed the “Kara Corner”. It sits on the stone porch-esque front of the library behind its grand columns. A table which catches the view of our expansive courtyard had Kara propped carefully in it “chilling”: music in ears and thought in eyes. I went up to her as I took time to sip on my iced coffee (more like my iced cream and sugar with a splash of coffee). She and I spoke life abundantly: its chaos, its highs and lows, its hopes and irony. Kara has a way of making me laugh so obnoxiously that I tend to drop or knock stuff over. When I am in her presence I have learned it is best to safely store everything in my book bag and keep my inhaler on hand in case my lungs become over inflamed from laughing so hard. My brain usually malfunctions speaking to her or anyone else thereafter because her humor has this way of plastering itself onto your brain and frankly it’s hard to let go of its hilarity. Her wit is quick and sharp, she has a gift for honesty, and a gift for writing. I attempted to take the reins on a sonnet she was writing (eager for her to get her HW done so we could hangout) but she put me to shame with her knowledge. Having studied Shakespeare intensively at Juilliard you would think I could hold my own on a sonnet, but apparently not so much in presence with Kara. Listening to Kara read her sonnet, which unlike mine did not rhyme words like “poo” and “you”, I began to think: this is one of those relationships I want to maintain and will not let go of. I value Kara because of her intellect, artistry, and character, and she has not gone unnoticed by myself.

These relationships are so much more than being in good standing with another person, they are so much more than idle. They have the capacity to be active, propellant, dynamic-- they present opportunity to grow in relationships beyond. Not just relationships with others, but with ideas, dreams, inspirations… they present opportunity to birth collaborations, unity, communications, relationships that swim into your work relationship, into your city relationship, into your nation relationship, and dare I say: your world relationship. Our impact is so much greater than I thought. This is a gift. Every relationship is a gift. A grand gift like a puppy or flowers, the kinds that bring happiness and require work and dedication to keep alive…

and I think Jason Mraz has a good place to start:

Yours Truly: Eternally Inspired Sand Shark,

                                                                     Erin Dailey