Student Spotlight: Gavan Ambrosini

Gavan Ambrosini

The Best of Both Worlds: 
UC Davis/UOP Partnership Gives Students an Expanded View of how Organizations Function

UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education has partnered with University of the Pacific (UOP) in Sacramento to offer students a unique opportunity. Graduates of the Human Resource Management Program or Professional Coaching Program can put their certificate credit toward a Master’s in Education with a concentration in Organizational Learning and Effectiveness (MAOLE) from UOP.

 UC Davis Coaching Certificate alumna Gavan Ambrosini took advantage of this opportunity and has recently graduated with her coaching certificate and her master’s degree.

 As an experienced career coach, Ambrosini said she was attracted to the connection between coaching individuals within organizations while also optimizing organizational needs. She felt that this bridge between coaching and organizational systems would allow her to combine her interests and enable her to help people and organizations function in a more synergistic way.

 “My coaching certificate gives me the skills to effect change within individuals, and the master’s is focused on the systems within an organization,” Ambrosini said. “The combination of the two helps me understand the context of what goes on in an organization, whether I’m looking at leadership, teams or individuals.”

Ambrosini said this viewpoint is particularly relevant in today’s workplace, with more Millennials (ages 23-38 in 2019) in the workforce. “Millennials tend to want feedback, guidance and a clear path for career development.” she said.

As millennials were brought into companies, they weren’t being treated as employees who needed to be developed, so they wouldn’t stay long. Ambrosini said this shift has forced leadership to re-evaluate their strategies in how they attract, develop and retain valuable employees.

“Millennials are often more motivated to learn and grow than other groups,” Ambrosini said. “I believe that’s driving internal organizational change and increasing the demand for leadership and executive coaching. It has reshaped how leaders work with their teams from a ‘command and control’ standpoint to one focused on both individual and overall employee engagement.”

Ambrosini now has the unique perspective that comes from coaching individuals as well as the larger context of how that impacts culture through effecting positive change at a systems level. 

“I have a strong foundation in organizational development as well as how people function best within organizations,” she said. “The UC Davis-UOP programs complement each other beautifully in shaping that foundation. Together, they are a powerful combination."

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