Impact of Aurora: contributing with confidence

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Elizabeth McHugh, Electronic Resources Manager at the University of Highlands and Islands shares her experience of Aurora and how it helped her to develop as a leader.

Since its launch in 2013, Aurora, Advance HE’s leadership development initiative for women, has helped develop the leadership skills of thousands of women from hundreds of institutions. 2022 sees the return of face-to-face events, starting in May and June, whilst online events will be running at the same time.

In this video, Elizabeth McHugh, Electronic Resources Manager at the University of Highlands and Islands shares her experience of Aurora and how it helped her to develop as a leader. She said,

“Aurora made me realise that leadership is not solely dependent on line management…in terms of leadership, my role can be working alongside other people, helping them to reach their goals, and helping them to pursue their ambitions, but also at the same time learning from them and learning how I can incorporate their skills and ideas into my own leadership style.”

One of the main advantages of the Aurora programme is the impact on confidence. Elizabeth said, “It’s allowed me to realise that I can actually contribute to discussions that are going on across the university, so that if the principal or a senior manager puts out a call for responses to a particular strategy document, then I have inputted into that in a way that I once would probably have thought ‘no, I can’t do that’.”

“Just because I’m in what some people might consider to be a small specialist role, it doesn’t mean that I don’t have something to contribute to the leadership management within the institution.”

Elizabeth’s Aurora programme was all virtual and she said there are still many advantages offered by doing the course online.

“You’re frequently meeting different people every time you’ve come into [an online] session, and that’s a great confidence booster, because you’re having to have a rapport with people very quickly in an online environment.”

Watch Elizabeth’s interview here.


This blog is kindly repurposed from AdvanceHE and you can read the original here: Impact of Aurora: contributing with confidence