Integrity Matters Broadcasts

March 10 , 2008

Pay it forward - one person at a time!

Dear Friends:

Executives-in-Residence's Pay It Forward Scholarship program has been officially launched. $200,000 has been committed and 24 applications have been received for a minimum of 10 scholarships that will be awarded. 

Our Scholarship Committee:  Dan Ortega, Chair, Dr. Bill Barr, Tim McCarthy and Donna Ferraro will be selecting the recipients who will begin their course work at CSUMB in the Fall Semester, 2008.  Great work, team. And before talking about the need to prepare our mentors to mentor, which will be initiated on Wednesday, March 12, at 3:00 p.m.; let's revisit the uniqueness of our approach.

What differentiates Executives-in-Residence's Pay It Forward scholarship program is our three dimensional relationship based process.  We are transforming the traditional transaction of simply providing financial assistance to students with needs into a mentor-protégé engagement that is built upon interpersonal, on-going and life-changing relationships. 

  1. Dollars (up to $5000 per year per recipient) will assist with financial pressures - to be managed prudently.
  2. Safety net (volunteers from Executives-in-Residence will be available to each recipient, providing insights, inspiration and practical counsel, on a minimum of once per month).
  3. Social re-investment, paying forward (in contrast to paying back to Executives-in-Residence's Scholarship assistance) , each recipient will be engaging, with and through Pay It Forward programs offered in partnership with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Monterey County, to encourage, support and inspire other individuals.  We are turning the clock back a generation with this concept.  We are not just saying, but we are showing our recipients to " ask not what your country (or state, county or community) can do for you, but what you can do for your country."  Maybe that old movie, My Fair Lady, made the right point:  "Don't tell me, show me."  And, ladies and gentlemen, that is exactly how important lessons are passed along - by personal, persistent and purposeful example - one relationship at a time.

Mentors provide counsel to protégés - and they make a difference.  As we have discussed before, our goal is to build confidence and enthusiasm for the next generation securing a university education.  In addition to providing expertise to our growing number of CSUMB students who will receive Executives-in-Residence's Pay It Forward scholarships, it is becoming clear that some of our expertise would also be valuable when provided to local high school students.  Local school counselors have asked for us to consider visiting their campuses, meeting with students in both small and large groups, sharing our own stories of how we - individually - accomplished whatever it is that we have achieved.  For this process to be most effective, it is worth considering that some preparation could make our engagement with younger people even more effective.  So, we are not working on structuring a workshop program that incorporates input from folks who know about successful and effective mentoring.

Friends of Executives-in-Residence 

Thank you for believing that we could and would make a difference.  We already have!


CSUMB Pay It Forward Scholarship
California State University Monterey Bay Foundation
100 Campus Center, Building 201/Suite 101
Seaside, California  93955
Tel: 831.582.5015
Fax: 831.582.5019

Pay It Forward Scholarship

  1. Object: Provide financial aid along with on-going Executives in Residence mentoring to eligible students to obtain a four-year college degree at California State University Monterey Bay in partnership with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Monterey County, California.

  2. Scope of Scholarship:  Up to $5,000 for each year, maximum $20,000 per student for four years of college to cover any portion of tuition, books, supplies and living expenses.

  3. Qualification* Guidelines:

    High school senior or high school graduate. (If a graduate, must have completed high school within the last two years.)

    B. Minimum five years of residency in Monterey County prior to making application for grant.

    C. Fulfill all CSUMB entrance requirements.

    D. First generation to go to college.

    E. Consult a minimum of 1 hour per month with Executives in Residence, who serve as positive role models to achieve academic success.

    F. Participate in Pay It Forward programs managed by the Boys and Girls Clubs of Monterey County

    * Criteria exceptions can be made by the Scholarship Committe

  4. Annual Renewal Requirements:

    A. Complete of minimum of 30 units per year.

    B. Maintain a GPA or 2.5 of better.

    C. Submit a report of the student’s progress with a request for scholarship continuance to the Executives in Residence each year within one month of CSUMB academic year-end. 

  5. Cancellation of scholarship

    A. Any false statement on application

    B. Failure to meet any requirements above stated.

Effective Interviewing - from Jim Bracher’s Salinas Californian Integrity Matters column 3-12-08

Regardless of age or circumstance, we are involved in the interviewing process – a significant part of our lives – being evaluated and conducting our own assessments.  So, what are some effective ways to capitalize on such opportunities?

Having conducted career counseling sessions, usually one-on-one, primarily with senior executives for 27 years, our consulting organization has received lots of constructive critique. Here are five essential interviewing behaviors:

  • Listen 
  • Know something relevant about the other person
  • Incorporate real-time observations– adapting seamlessly 
  • Ask appropriate questions
  • Follow-up– sooner rather than later – saying thank you and asking for help in how best to remain in contact.

So, what additional actions might enhance interviewing-impact – to secure a position, a promotion, or make a sale?  Having recently been invited to join Marc Rosen’s team of volunteers at Alisal High School’s Career Center for “mock” interviews for graduating seniors; my interview skills were improved. Mr. Rosen and his colleagues have structured an impressive disciplined process that includes volunteer orientation and focused interview-feedback interaction with open discussion.  The observable impact on student-participants was remarkable.  Young people sit face-to-face with successful community leaders, presenting their credentials, asking for a job offer and then absorbing specific recommendations on how to improve their interviewing skills.  In addition to the direct interaction, students are encouraged to follow-up, after the session, individually.

These “mock” interviews, according to Mr. Rosen, are life-changing.  Certainly, participating in the process is its own reward.  In my case, whatever contribution made was greatly outweighed by what was received.  Below are 13 tips for effective interviewing: 

  • Remember, you are “on stage” the moment you approach the interview – clothing, grooming, posture, resume, letter of introduction
  • Never exaggerate experience or knowledge; simply report the facts, objectively
  • Enunciate, be clear and avoid slang (like totally, dude, cool, etc. – for sure)
  • Be on time, even a little early, to show respect
  • Take notes, communicating an interest in the ideas of others
  • Make eye contact, allowing those with whom you meet to feel a connection
  • Listen carefully and actively, seeking to understand more than being understood
  • Focus on the positive, personal assets and opportunities that might arise
  • Speak no ill of previous employers, (avoid bad-mouthing about anything)
  • Do your homework on the organization and its values and people
  • Be prepared to ask questions that are job and organization specific
  • Be present – stay focused on what is being discussed and don’t let your mind wander
  • Shut off cell phones and pagers, minimizing distractions

Alisal High School to Conduct Mock Interview Workshops – press release!
Alisal High School will conduct spring Mock Interview Workshops starting Monday, March 5.   Mr. Rosen is looking for a few more interviewers to give every senior this valuable opportunity. If you are interested in participating, please email Mr. Rosen at  as soon as possible. The remaining open workshops are as follows:

#7 - Thursday, March 13, 8:30 - 11:00 a.m. (Period 3)
#8 - Friday, March 14, 12:20 - 2:50 p.m. (Period 6)

By the end of the year, nearly 550 seniors will have participated in a mock interview.

To help Alisal seniors fine-tune their interviewing skills, contact Mr. Marc Rosen:  831-796-7650 and volunteer a few hours of your time. 

Pay It Forward is an ongoing process through which individuals reach out to others, with help and reassurance.  Since we can seldom repay those who were our mentors, guides and benefactors – including parents and family members – then the greatest opportunities lie in sharing with those who will follow – so, please continue what all who appreciate what has been provided to them – simply and graciously, Pay It Forward!


Jim Bracher
James F. Bracher
Dimension Five Consultants, Inc.
Bracher Center for Integrity in Leadership
P.O. Box 22467
Carmel, California  93922

James F. (Jim) Bracher,  Director
Executives in Residence
Foundation of CSUMB 
California State University Monterey Bay 
100 Campus Center,  
Building 201 - Suite 101
Seaside, California  93955
Phone:  direct:  831-582-5038
Ruby Sanchez (831) 582-5015
(831) 582-5019 Fax

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