Learning Logs: Fellows

Updates and Insights from Bush Fellows During Their Leadership Journey

Sylvia Bartley
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What grounds me? What’s my path and purpose? How do I ensure my actions are in alignment with my personal mission of living consistently with my spiritual awareness? These are the questions I ask myself daily, knowing that I’ll be guided by them to being the best person I can become. Of course there are times when this isn’t the case. So, for me, of utmost importance are remaining open, aware and receptive to new ways of thinking and being, staying connecting with like-minded people, and aligning my passion with my work. All of these are key to achieving my life’s purpose.

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What a great time to be writing my sixth month Learning Log. Six months ago when I started my fellowship, I was both excited and anxious of how I would fare in this uncharted territory. My educational progress was entering into a new stage and the professional life that has shaped most of my adult life me was coming to end. As my fellowship began, I put together a plan that envisioned the important milestones in my educational journey and the benchmarks of how I will measure the progress that my community work.

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“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom." - Anais Nin

Lori Saroya
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When I received the Bush Fellowship, I was overwhelmed by all the speaking engagements, media inquiries, LinkedIn invites, Facebook friend requests, and other attention that came my way. My law school featured me in the Alumni enewsletter and the college news. I was invited as a guest speaker on TPT’s Almanac show.

Jacquie Berglund
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I am the Founder and CEO of FINNEGANS beer company and when I applied for the Bush Fellowship in 2014 my plan was to create a social innovation lab to help other social entrepreneurs get started. My vision was to create an inspiring work environment and a gathering space for innovators to network and socialize. I had been working on this project for almost 2 years prior to my applying for the Bush Fellowship.

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As I finished the first semester of my EMBA program at the Carlson School of Management, I felt like I was between two worlds: the nonprofit world that I knew, and the business world that I was learning. I was aware of my surroundings, finding similarities and identifying tensions, and wondering where I fit in.

I found it helpful to visualize my learning journey as a bridge.

Sue Hakes
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The vision for my Bush Fellowship is to improve the quality of life in rural northeastern Minnesota by building leadership capacity in myself and others in my community.

My Bush Fellowship is bringing forth the three gifts I’d most hoped for when my Fellowship began— time for exploration and learning, improved credentials that open new doors, and a growing network of people with whom to share the journey and the work.

Syl Jones headshot
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“The Course of True Learning Never Runs Smooth”: 
Three Takeaways From The First Six months

Everywhere you look these days, people are talking about “story” and the importance of narrative. This is probably a good thing, but because we live in a hyper-marketing environment where competition drives large companies to seek every competitive advantage some are using story concepts in a deceptive manner.

Malini Srivastava
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What I’ve learned thus far: Many many insights have emerged since I started this fellowship journey with my fellow-fellows and the Bush Foundation. Instead of making a long list there is one thought that I would like to share. Serendipitous concatenation of events can play a large role in our lives. As such most of these events are outside our control. What is in our control is creating the conditions and mindset that helps preserve the agility to respond to serendipity.

Michael Strand
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“An Unexpected Change of Course(s)” - A New Balance: Hands + Body AND the Mind


This past November I had the opportunity to travel to Alfred, New York as a visiting artist/lecturer at the New York State School of Ceramics, the premier ceramic art program internationally. In a variety of ways this invitation to interact with this learning community was a touchstone in my career – but what transpired in my time at Alfred could not have been anticipated.