The Blues Is #1: Lessons from the Blues Masters on Weathering the Storms of Change

MPD9 Management and Professional Development

Location: 102C, Wisconsin Center

TUESDAY, 10:45 - 11:30 a.m.

“I done seen better days, but I’m putting up with these.” Rabbit Brown sang those words in the early 1900s, but many of us in higher ed could say the same today. Our schools are going through changes that can give you the blues, if you let ‘em. For most of us, we don’t have a voice in those changes -- we have to pick up the pieces of budget cuts, staffing shortfalls, and leadership turnover, all without succumbing to the fear and pessimism they can bring. I’ve had my own share of unexpected changes in my higher ed career so far: five years, one school, four different organizational structures, five different offices, and nine different bosses. (Yes, really.) I’ll share lessons from my troubled past and teach you how to combine modern systems and tools with wisdom from the old blues masters to be prepared for change, plan for troubled times, and find opportunity in turmoil. No hoodoo or mojo hands required.

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Jesse Lavery
Director of Web Communications, Allegheny College

Jesse Lavery manages Web Communications at Allegheny College, a national liberal arts college of 2,100 students in Meadville, Pennsylvania. Lavery’s office is responsible for the design, development, and content strategy of the entirety of the Allegheny family of websites, and the WordPress Multisite installation that powers them. In 2012, he built a cross-division Social Media Team to manage the institution’s official social media accounts. Allegheny is the 32nd oldest college in the nation, and celebrated its two-hundredth anniversary in 2015.