The Power of Community shines brightly in Ana Zandarin’s inspiring journey through Baltimore’s Community Leadership program, leaving a lasting impact on neighborhoods and individuals alike.
In the latest episode of UMBC’s Mic’d Up Podcast, titled “Building Bridges: Stories of Impact in Baltimore Communities,” we had the privilege of hearing from Ana Zandarin, M.P.S. ’23, a recent graduate of UMBC’s Community Leadership graduate program. Ana’s journey highlights the power of community engagement and its transformative impact on individuals and neighborhoods.
Embracing the Local Connection:
Ana’s story begins with her transition from vibrant cities like Barcelona and Rosario to Baltimore. She quickly discovered that Baltimore, affectionately known as “small to more,” offers a unique local connection that resonated deeply with her roots in Argentina. This sense of community, where everyone knows someone, fosters collaboration and shared purpose.
The Power of Community Partnerships:
One of the key takeaways from Ana’s experience in the Community Leadership program was the importance of meaningful partnerships. Ana emphasizes that true partnerships thrive on transparency, honesty, and a shared commitment to service. With openness, Ana forges connections with local organizations, magnifying their joint impact.
Challenging Traditional Education Constructs:
Ana’s dedication to education and her belief in the power of self-reflection have shaped her approach to leadership. She highlights the significance of challenging traditional educational paradigms and centering non-cognitive factors in evaluating educational programs. It stresses valuing each student’s uniqueness and ensuring they feel acknowledged and valued in their environment.
Lessons in Leadership and Growth:
Throughout the podcast, Ana shares valuable insights into the skills and mindsets crucial for success in graduate programs and beyond. She emphasizes working smarter, not harder, and highlights time management as a key to productivity. Furthermore, Ana stresses choosing partners and projects aligned with one’s values for genuine impact.
Continuing the Journey:
Ana’s journey doesn’t end with her graduation. She sees the Community Leadership program as just the beginning, a springboard for a lifetime of learning and growth. Her aspiration to lead with humanity, support her team’s development, and foster meaningful partnerships reflects a dedication to lifelong learning and a commitment to improving Baltimore’s communities.
A Community Roadmap:
Ana Zandarin’s story is a beacon of inspiration for anyone passionate about community engagement and leadership. Her experiences in UMBC’s Community Leadership graduate program serve as a roadmap for those seeking to impact their communities positively. Ana exemplifies the transformative potential of community-driven leadership by embracing local connections, fostering meaningful partnerships, and challenging established norms.