Ambition: “It is based on someone’s intrinsic, personal goals and driven by external forces”.  

-Mayor Bliss


Every morning the JobStart participants begin with Check-in for 30 minutes.  On Thursday, June 28th, Mayor Bliss joined them as a guest speaker.  Check-in usually focuses on one of the seven A’s from the Center for Work Ethics Development:  Attendance, Appearance, Ambition, Accountability, Appreciation, Acceptance, Attitude (in no particular order).  The Mayor was asked to share her thoughts on ambition.

The Mayor shared about her upbringing in the UP, and how her family of 10 children faced economic challenges.   She also shared that during most of her first twelve years of life she was in a wheelchair due to some health issues, having to learn to walk again twice.   Sharing these realities gave her some credibility in a room of young men for whom life has presented several challenges. But as the Mayor attested, these struggles don’t define us but they do shape us.  And as she spoke further on ambition she affirmed that everyone “is an expert in their own lives” and that “we need to appreciate and love who we are.” This is the foundation of ambition.

The Mayor’s experience of working in a home for abused & neglected children when she was in college proved to be one of those external forces that guided her decisions to work in that field.  In fact it was her advocacy for children and women issues that provided the impetus for her being elected a City Commissioner in 2009. When asked by one of the JobStart participants what she likes most about being the Mayor, she stated “I really love being with people who care about the community.”   JobStart is grateful to Mayor Bliss for the care & concern she showed the young men that morning, and for offering some great insights on ambition.

Picture of Dick Bulkowski

Dick Bulkowski

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