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Be True to Your School
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Attended one of two 10 year high school reunions recently. The one I attended was from an all girl Catholic high school. The reason I attended this one and not the reunion of the high school I actually graduated from was because of the number of years I knew many of my classmates. I went to Catholic schools since the first grade and many of the girls from elementary and junior high also went on to the local Catholic high school. Let's just say, I survived Catholic school and didn't become a nun as my mother expected...and never really continued practicing Catholicism since I left that school.


The reason I'm writing is really about the high school reunion and the "bio book" they hand out to folks who attend or send in money. First I want to gripe that for such an expensive admission ticket for the reunion I was very disappointed to get a bio book that look like a very cheap course packet from college. Single-sided book with one staple...pretty pathetic. Second, it felt like a prom and not really a social gathering...dinner, drinks, and a DJ...my gawd, we're not in high school why have to get all dressed up and dancing...argh.

Now back to that bio book...so to really setup the context of this entry is that the second high school I went to was a magnet school...very college prep oriented and very much supposed to be my exposure to public school...but not really. Definitely a quite challenging school that's always ranked pretty high in state standards. Many of classmates ended up at Ivy League universities or very well known UC campuses ;)

So here's what really threw me off...that damn bio book. So in the all girl high school, the first question they ask is if you were married. The magnet school first question was what is your occupation.

WOW!!! That first question was pretty profound for me. The values of both those schools pretty much were blaring loud on those bio book page. Even the types of responses I saw in those books were at two very different ends of the spectrum. And there I was right in the middle...so why does this matter that I'm writing so much...well it's because I'm in the middle of those values.

I don't have kids and I'm really into my career. I'm excited about the type of work I do and the effect I have on the community and in my workplace. Family stuff is really not on my radar and it probably won't be for a while. That first bio book question has really made me think about the types of schools I would want my children to attend and it has made me reflect on what types of opportunities you get when you prescribe to particular values. Not only is it about what school you want to send your children, but it has made me reflect on the values of the organization I work for.

Some folks often wonder why a particular company they work for doesn't feel quite right. There's a reason, that company may not espouse the values that you truly believe in...then you know it's time to find something more suitable. When you're not in the organization you feel has the same values you do, you are probably not working to your fullest potential nor are you really pushing out the most of your creative energy or innovations.

Over this holiday season, I think I'll have more time to reflect and review my values, the organizations I associate with, and the company I keep...it is definitely a good time to take inventory and take action. I'm just surprised it took my 10 year reunion to make me think this way.

Posted on December 20, 2002 03:46 PM