Michael Wynn | Social Community Manager
The 2022 Leadership Greater Waterbury program concluded on June 21 with a graduation ceremony at Post Downtown, recognizing the accomplishments of fourteen professionals from across the greater Waterbury region, including two Post associates – Caitlin Grant, assistant director of online Honors Program, and Nicole Steck, scholarship and policy coordinator.
Over the course of the last year, Grant and Steck together with twelve other local professionals participated in monthly day-long sessions on topics ranging from innovation and change management, government relations and civic engagement, presentation and public speaking skills, and project development and planning. Learning from local and state leaders, the program participants gained valuable insight into not only what leaders do, but the qualities they possess, to enact lasting and meaningful change for those they lead. Working in small groups, their experience culminated in the development and execution of a group project that directly addresses an issue impacting the region.
“I’ve grown as a leader because I have a better appreciation for giving back to the local area,” Grant reflected. “I see how important and fulfilling it is to uplift other people, especially those who may not have been as fortunate in life.”
Grant’s group, “The Welcome Back Pack,” focused on providing resources to formerly incarcerated community members reentering society. They created more than 100 packs that included personal items, such as shampoo and toothpaste, as well as guides to help them secure jobs and pursue educational opportunities.
“Life after incarceration can be a rough road,” she said. “But with proper support, even those experiencing adversity can become thriving members of the community. As leaders in the Waterbury area, my group members and I want nothing more than to assist those who are open to bettering themselves and contributing to the Greater Waterbury area.”
Steck echoed this sentiment. Her group’s project, “Health and Wellness,” invited members of the Waterbury community to learn both the benefits of living a healthy lifestyle and practical ways to do so.
“Holistic health consists of many factors but ultimately can be summarized as a balance between physical health and mental health,” she shared. “Our hope was to increase awareness within the Greater Waterbury community of holistic health and the benefits of living a healthy lifestyle.”
This focus on community education and support are what Steck valued the most from this experience.
“The biggest takeaway from the LGW program was the importance of and need for community collaborations,” Steck reflected. “By building relationships with other community leaders, the ability to give back to the community is greatly increased.”
To learn more about the Leadership Greater Waterbury program, please visit the Waterbury Chamber of Commerce’s website.