Campus Community / People of SU

Change from Within

Written by Marketing Communications

March 8, 2022

Portrait of Colette Taylor standing outside. Graphic reads Celebrating Women's History Month. Text below reads Colette Taylor, EdD, College of Education.

Image credit: Yosef Kalinko Graphics: Marissa Leitch

With March 8 marking International Women’s Day—and March being Women's History Month—Seattle University will feature a female faculty member each week in March, beginning with Dr. Colette Taylor.

“Leadership to me is about community,” say Colette Taylor, EdD, program director of the College of Education’s Educational and Organizational Learning and Leadership (EOLL) program.

For her part, Taylor says two life experiences shaped her for this role. Before graduating from the Academy of the Holy Names in Tampa, Fla., Taylor lived in 48 states because of her father’s military career.

“Growing up I was surrounded by diverse populations. Coupled with my high school education, I draw upon being able to understand myself in relation to other people,” she says. “I know everybody comes with a different story that impacts their leadership journey.”

Taylor’s students are director- and executive-level professionals committed to promoting social justice and equity, particularly for historically underrepresented groups, within their organizations.

The three-year EOLL program requires students to take a personal inventory of their leadership skills before examining how they can influence an organization’s ability to achieve their equitable leadership goals. The reason? Personal biases can “frame their perception of leadership,” Taylor says.

“Our students are going into the world with a different perspective of what leadership is about,” she says. “A lot of our grads have been asked to make change in organizations as it relates to diversity and inclusion. They know how to do this and understand that they can start small. It doesn’t happen overnight. But it can happen.”