Cohort 4 Participant Reflections

Jane S. Allgair, MBA

Jane S. Allgair, MBA

Executive Director of Enterprise and Economic Development
Research and Development

In applying for the UMBrella Coaching Program, I was looking to broaden my network, meet new co-workers, make more connections at UMB, and benefit my career. The program did allow me to meet new and interesting women. The monthly presentations broadened my outlook on certain topics and increased my awareness, which will enable me to evaluate myself and my career differently and more independently. The discussions will help me as a manager, in encouraging my employees to grow and possibly look at things more positively. However, the most surprising and most enjoyable parts of the program were the discussions with my coaching group and how it felt to relate my experience and guidance to others in helping their career growth. This program has made me look beyond the ‘singular me’ to the ‘greater we’ and how we grow together.

Davene Hinton, MBA

Davene Hinton, MBA

Training Coordinator
Maryland Center of Excellence on Problem Gambling
School of Medicine

Over the last eight months, I have been surrounded by some amazing women: Jenny Owens [our coach], Samantha, Eunissa, Kelly, Kira, and May. We met once a month, and I was able to be transparent. From that experience, I was able to grow personally and professionally. Each month, we were also invited to attend program events with awesome speakers. This program prepared me for my promotion and gave me the tools I needed for a successful outcome. I have learned that it’s OK for me to promote myself, and I can boldly say, ‘I am remarkable!’ Thank you, UMBrella, for allowing me to be a part of an amazing program.

Kimber M. Lee, MBAKimber M. Lee, MBA

Director of Human Resources
School of Social Work

The UMBrella Coaching Program was a great experience, and I feel blessed to be a part of it. Each month, we were given a topic with corresponding materials to review before meeting with our group. We discussed the topics with our coach and other areas of interest such as challenges we face as professional women. The meetings provided an opportunity for self-examination and ways to navigate my professional goals and challenges in a different way. One of the best aspects was connecting with my group. They are phenomenal women who were supportive and encouraging during our meeting discussions. My coach, Vanessa Carroll, is amazing! She imparted so many great insights and challenged me in areas where she could see I needed a gentle nudge to move forward in my goals. Vanessa was just the coach I needed to help me change my perspective and move forward in exploring what I want as a professional and how to achieve it.

Nicole LennonNicole Lennon

Academic Coordinator
Department of Advanced Oral Sciences and Therapeutics
University of Maryland School of Dentistry

I have enjoyed my participation in the UMBrella program immensely! The monthly group meetings encouraged me to prioritize the career goals I set for myself and maintain accountability, and the monthly program events inspired me to take action. Because I joined the university in November 2020, the opportunity to connect with other women across campus was particularly valuable to me. I feel more connected and better prepared for the future because of this program. Also, there are so many cool women doing really awesome things in our community. Go us!!

Jana AndersonJana Anderson

Human Resources for the Institute for Genome Sciences
University of Maryland School of Medicine

The UMBrella Coaching Program was remarkable, and I had the pleasure of learning from a team of two great coaches: Cherokee Layson-Wolf, PHARMD, Associate Dean of Student Affairs, School of Pharmacy  and Shannon Tucker, MS, Assistant Dean of Instructional Design, School of Pharmacy. Honestly, this program allowed me to connect with my coaches and the amazing women in the group whom I may not have met on campus otherwise. Each topic was engaging and insightful from the first meeting, and I truly bonded with my group and learned from their experiences, best practices, and more. I enjoyed the autonomy in speaking about professional and personal vulnerabilities we encounter as women and how to overcome them. There were key takeaways from every monthly session, which allowed me to gain clarity on my purpose and goals and to take action. The monthly events enhanced my negotiation skills, communication, and assertiveness as a woman. I now have an entire network of support within the program. The program is very empowering, and as an alumnus, I look forward to participating in upcoming sessions with the new cohorts.