Raul Gomez, Emergency Preparedness Specialist, Cone Health Emergency Management

As an early career professional within emergency management, I felt a sense of doubt and uncertainty in the approach and vision I had in progressing concepts of homeland security within my organization and its application to community stakeholders. With the help of my  mentors, I was encouraged to apply to the NPGS Emergence program to measure myself and have an opportunity to learn alongside elite talent from across the nation. The application process was unique in that it not only required your perspectives to be expressed thoughtfully through an essay component but also necessitated displaying your uniqueness through a creative submission of your choice.

Participating and graduating from the program was more than just a special experience and highlight of my career but  provided an opportunity to learn from my fellow cohort members their ideas, stories and experience encountered throughout their careers. It is the integration of personal experiences, academic material and dialog with subject matter experts that permits for the continuous evolution of one’s perception and facilitates in the validity of elements the program fosters to support in formulating and delivering potential initiatives to our home institution and communities.

Regarding lessons learned and their professional application, my greatest takeaways center on developing strategic approaches to situations by utilizing critical thinking techniques and maintaining an open perspective when interacting with individuals. Additionally, as I continue my development and advancement within the profession, the concept of “owning your space” is significant in that as leadership opportunities come, you should embrace the responsibilities and provide your team the best of what you would want from leaders.

Overall, the program is a once in a lifetime experience that has positively impacted me by instilling inspiration and motivation to continue advancing the profession.

Raul Gomez

Emergency Preparedness Specialist

Cone Health Emergency Management