At a university that shall be referred to as Cornucopia, a staff member disappeared and no one knows why. It was a normal Friday in April and the day was unwinding, Jane was in her office for the last time. That day, something happened that provoked her sudden departure, but it is unclear if it was a decision she made or if the school made it for her.
The following Monday, Rosa the assistant came in and noticed something very unusual. Everything that decorated Jane’s door was gone. The sad part was that no one bothered to tell Rosa and it became evident that no one bothered to tell anyone. An email went out to select organizations, but people stopped in asking for Jane and no one gave a straight answer.
Sure, there are contracts signed and protocols to be followed, but there was a lack of professionalism that happened and no one seemed to care. While rules and regulations should be followed, there should also be some sort of respect made with regard to the person and the people they interact with.
Instead of explaining why Jane was no longer responding to her phone calls or emails, or letting the school know that a director has left… they allowed people to speculate.
I’m sure a lot of people still don’t realize Jane is gone or why, but the school doesn’t care. They don’t care that people are still trying to reach her and are thinking, Jane is really unprofessional because I have not received a response back from her. The school also doesn’t care that no one seems to know who to reach once they realize Jane is gone and they aren’t supposed to ask about her. There is no protocol in place for those who are left asking, why?
Cornucopia reminds us to follow the faith based views that the university was built on, but falls short of realizing that it has failed to practice what it preaches:
Competence, compassion, and servant leadership.
People are not daft and will eventually know the truth, by then it may become evident that no one is safe from a fate like Jane’s. I hope it is also evident that there are people who suffer from Cornucopia syndrome, they study here and get hired here, but have no real world experience or social skills to interact with those who live outside the bubble that is Cornucopia.
I hope that fictitious Jane knows that the university lost not only an important asset that understood diversity, but also an individual who reflects the mission and vision in a way that is not hypocritical as those who removed her. The campus will miss you and although there was no proper goodbye, there is still a place that will forever be known as Jane’s office.