All That You Can Be
When it came to career advancement, Donna Sims says she was “my own worst enemy.” A Johns Hopkins employee since 1983 in a variety of assistant positions—beginning as a temp secretary in Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology—Sims stood by as many of her peers moved on to better jobs. And then wondered why she wasn’t doing the same.
“I’d become stagnant and only looked for something else [at Hopkins] if something upset me where I was,” says Sims, currently executive assistant to Ellen MacKenzie, dean of the Bloomberg School of Public Health. Those moves, she says, were usually lateral.
But when JHU launched a pilot program last year to develop talent already at the university, someone who knew what Sims was capable of nominated her for the inaugural course. Eligible were current employees throughout the university already working as administrative assistants.