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Ann Marie Murray had been well prepared when she became president of Herkimer County Community College in New York in August 2008, but she was still surprised by some aspects of the job.
“I had no idea how much you need to know, the amount of information I have to have at my fingertips,” Murray said.
That includes information on government agencies, advocacy and legal issues, along with “business savvy,” she said, adding: “You have to immerse yourself in the culture of the campus and the community.”
The biggest surprise for Murray was realizing how “important your fortitude and strength of character need to be. Decisions have to made very quickly.”
Even if you’ve worked for a president, as Murray had as a vice president for academic affairs at another community college, the breadth of the job is not understandable until you sit in the president’s chair, she said.
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