Avila Now

January 5, 2022

Q&A: Jeff Kolb, MSOD ’21

Alumnus Jeff Kolb, MSOD
Jeff Kolb.

“I was looking into potentially getting an MBA but felt that was too broad and not specific enough to what I was currently doing and wanted to do for my career,” said Avila alumnus Jeff Kolb. Like many in the Organizational Development master’s program, Jeff was already performing OD-type duties in his job — without any formal training. “Most of my work centered around learning and development. I wanted to expand my knowledge and skills in this area. I wanted something broader that could strengthen what I do day-to-day,” said Kolb.

Looking for an MSOD program that would expand his knowledge and build his OD skills, Kolb found Avila to be a great fit. “Avila was appealing for a couple of main reasons,” said Kolb. “I was looking for a local university that could help strengthen my network locally. I wanted to network and learn from others in the KC area.” Avila’s Leadership Coaching Certificate concentration also appealed to Kolb. “I felt like it was a great fit as that was something I could leverage and truly expand my skillset from.”

“Also, the fact that I could apply what I was learning directly into my day-to-day is a big part of the reason why I picked the program.”

How did the MSOD program surprise you?

I was pleasantly surprised it was only one day per week for classes. I felt like it was the right amount of outside-of-class work for the most part where I never truly felt too overwhelmed and could manage with all my other life responsibilities.

The program itself surprised me how much I truly grew personally and professionally from it. I was expecting to learn some new things but didn’t expect to grow in my confidence and other personal items that then translated to work and my effectiveness there.

What are your professional goals, and how is Avila’s Organizational Development degree helping you reach them?

One professional goal is how I can weave in my leadership coaching skills to my day-to-day as I am passionate about it. My capstone for the program is helping with that and I look to continue to weave it in. I have a goal to lead even more OD efforts for our organization so having the credibility of the MSOD in addition to more skills and knowledge will help propel that goal.

I also would love to mentor others that are first getting into the field in the KC area so having connections to the program will help me reach that goal.

I feel like I built my network with other students in the program.

They inspired me to grow and be better.

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