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What does a 21st century leadership require?
Nearly everyone has felt left out at some point in their lives. Migrated to new school , facing language barriers ,not being chosen in desired team, deliberate exclusion or rejection from peer group, being purposefully embarrassed or bullied, doing poorly in subjects or based on aspects of lives that one cannot change such as race, gender, financial status etc – these are ways that people may feel like an outsider .Since I was 5, I remember changing school in every 2 year or sometimes twice in a year.
I have studied from 10 different schools because my father was a Government official, he was transferred from one place to another within the country. Together with the stress of aligning with curriculum I also had to go through exclusion in new schools. With time, I learnt the art of connecting, adapting and growing in a multicultural environment. I was quite fascinated by different cultures. When I grew up, the story continued.
While working in more than 3 cities across India and Germany in the last 4 years, I have interacted with co-workers and customers across continents – in UK, Germany, Australia, and Singapore. People were diverse in terms of ethnic groups, their backgrounds, style of thinking and ways of working. I gradually acquired the skills to independently navigate life in a foreign culture and respect them. These experiences have taught me to move beyond diversity and embrace inclusion. So back to the question. What does a 21st century leadership require? In my view, it requires inclusive leaders.
Inclusion bridges gaps in diversity and those differences are leveraged to focus on the common goals. This leadership quality has enabled me to resolve conflicting situations more effectively and engage people around me. Strengths that I will bring to my study experience include inclusive leadership and social skills, refined through my experiential learning. I would break barriers and make sure that even unpopular voices in the class have a seat at the table. I will promote the level of support and collaboration whenever required. When each student will feel unique recognized for their differences and feel engaged with a sense of belonging then the class will be more integrated yet dynamic.
6 years ago, despite a strong desire to continue studies after under graduation, I found that I can’t easily pay for Graduate School due to low family income. The situation has not changed much even today. Thus, I use this opportunity to demonstrate strong financial need. This scholarship will play an important role in making Graduate school more accessible and affordable, and paving the way for me to achieve my career goals. By reducing financial concerns, scholarships can also mean more time for studying and will allow me to maximize college experience through community service and volunteer opportunities. Moreover, in order to watch us(women) to compete in a Science and Business field, a certain levelling of playing field is required.
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