The Question Matters

College Administrator: Millennials Believe There’s Something Bigger and Better

Recently, you’ve read my interviews with a college career coach at Abilene Christian University and a professor at Texas Women’s University who specializes in first year students.  I have to say that my conversations with higher learning administrators and professors is fast becoming on my favorite pastimes in blogging. Here’s interview #3.

James Townsend and I knew one another at Abilene Christian University, where I was a student and he was a recruiter and administrator.  A great guy and a good friend, I’m grateful for the time he’s given me via Skype and by email.  Our conversations touched on the spirituality of college students, how well they’re prepared for college life and learning, and what they can expect as they leave college life for their careers.  Here’s a quick bio of James:

[Even before] graduating from Abilene Christian University in 1989, I began a 24 year professional journey in Christian higher education as an administrator, consultant, and first year experience instructor.  Most of my professional life has included visiting with high school students and parents about the college admissions and financial aid process and the best ways to transition to the collegiate environment. I completed my MBA at LeTourneau University in 2006 and am currently working towards a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership in Higher Education through Grand Canyon University in Arizona.  I’m currently the director of admissions for LeTourneau University in Longview, Texas.

I asked James the following questions.  I look forward to sharing his responses with you in the coming days:

  • Compare graduating high school seniors now to graduating seniors ten years ago when you started at LeTourneau.  What changes have you noticed?
  • How well prepared are students for college?  Where are they well prepared?  Where are they lacking?
  • Share a couple of stories about students who’ve really impressed you.
  • What can this generation bring to any arena of life (work, home, whatever) that’s unique and needed?
  • What are the biggest challenges this generation will face?  Specifically, how are they going to have to grow?

I know James as “JT,” and of everything he told me, one phrase stood out.  This generation has the numbers, the relative youth, and the resources to maybe just maybe be right about this:

This generation always believes there is something bigger and better around the corner.


Why Millennials Are Going to Keep You on Your Toes

Posted in Generation Y,Next Generation Leaders,Not for Profit by treyfinley1008 on May 13, 2010
Tags: ,

Katya’s Non-Profit Marketing Blog | Why Millennials Are Going to Keep You on Your Toes.

A good short blog post demonstrating that Millennials want to be engaged and need to be engaged even at very young ages.  Organizations–including NFP’s–cannot afford to wait until Millennials are financially stable enough or “mature” enough to contribute meaningfully.  In short–

Give them more responsibility than they’re ready for.  They’re more likely to reward you with loyalty and engagement.

Social Media and Business

Posted in Change,Entrepreneurs,Generation X,Generation Y,Not for Profit,Resources by treyfinley1008 on March 8, 2010

Browsing the shelves of Barnes and Noble is a rare pleasure for me, a pleasure which I received this past Friday night.  I walked through the history section, and noticed a book on John Adams that’s next on my list.  I took a peek at the latest sports biographies, and I’m really interested in reading the recent biography of Willie Mays.  My final stop in the store took me to the business section.  One on rack, they have their business best sellers.  On that rack were, count ’em, 9 books on how your business and mine need to figure out social media.

I couldn’t help but think, “Duh!”

Among the mile markers along my entrepreneurial journey was an eight-week visit with small business marketing specialists.  The biggest takeaway for me was, as you might imagine, the importance of blogging.  My blog is the hub of my social media strategy.  It is the common factor on my Facebook Fan Page, Linked In profile, Twitter feed, business web page, and NFP web page.  And did I mention I have a Ning account, too?

There’s tons out there on the power of social media to level the playing field of business, especially if Barnes and Noble is your measuring stick.


Posted in Coaching,Entrepreneurs,Not for Profit by treyfinley1008 on February 17, 2010

In my quest for financial solid ground, I’m looking into every open door.  I told my coach last night that I had a problem with that approach.  My coach asked me a very common coaching question last night:  “All things begin equal, where are you at your best?”  At first glance, this question seems innocuous and unimaginative.  He followed it up with an insight into the life of an entrepreneur that I’ll still be unpacking months from now.  “Where is the intersection between what people are asking you to do, and what you do best?”

As an entrepreneur in the field of coaching, I have been in the business of saying “yes” to any and every opportunity to share my passion for coaching.  Business networking lunch?  Yep, I’m there.  Not-for-profit meeting of the minds where I can shake hands?  Wouldn’t miss it.  A weekend training event?  Sign me up.

I had begun to feel like I was saying “yes” to everything because I had no choice.  His two questions opened up a world of opportunities and reminded me of what I’m made to do. Find the intersection of your passion and your client’s need, he said, and you’ll have a winning combination.

Check out my coach.

Next Generation Leaders: Ivan Chang and Keith Tan

Posted in Entrepreneurs,Generation Y,Next Generation Leaders,Not for Profit by treyfinley1008 on February 9, 2010

I haven’t told a Next Generation Leader story in a while, but came across this article while surfing today.  These two Gen Y members impressed me enough to post their story.  When you make up your mind to do something, it doesn’t have to take long for it to become reality.  In this case, it took just 24 hours.

Their social entrepreneurship story is all Smiles.

Laura and Rebecca: Next Generation Leaders

Posted in Generation Y,Leadership,Next Generation Leaders,Not for Profit,Video by treyfinley1008 on November 20, 2009

No matter your age, you can lead others.  Laura Whitman and Rebecca Guldin are leading student councils in Pennsylvania, teaching and coaching them on the power of ONE.  Don’t miss the video they produced with other teenagers in their area, posted below. I don’t know them, but I’m proud of them.

And don’t miss the opportunity to find out more about ONE.

Kiva: Social Justice for the Next Generation

Posted in Entrepreneurs,Next Generation Leaders,Not for Profit by treyfinley1008 on November 13, 2009

If you don’t know this company, you should.  Kiva creates opportunities for individuals like yourself to provide micro-loans to entrepreneurs in the developing world.  You’ll find compelling stories from all over the world, from shopkeepers trying to take their business to the next level to a single mom who wants to buy two pigs so that she can sell them within her community.  Recipients of the micro-loans have an agreed upon window of time in which to pay back the loan.

This week alone, over $700,000 has been loaned to budding entrepreneurs.

I’m listing Kiva as my Next Generation Leader of the week because they’re the kind of place I want to work for, and they’ve revolutionized the power of small gifts to create big life change. Not content with simply handing out well-intentioned compassionate gifts, they’ve created a pathway in which a donor can give not once, but several times over as loans are paid back.  This four-year-old company is committed to eradicating poverty, not simply giving handouts.

To learn more about Kiva, its core values, and how you can give, head over to their site.