Ryan Hall ’19 chose Shenandoah because of the Master of Science in Organizational Leadership program’s great curriculum and fantastic educators. “The cohort model fit my collaborative learning style and helped me make life-long connections,” said Hall. “The master’s in organizational leadership is well worth your time and effort!”
While studying at Shenandoah, Hall enjoyed meeting the rest of the members of his cohort and working with them over a two-year timeframe. He made so many fun memories with his cohort. He also received the 2020 Outstanding Graduate award for the School of Education & Leadership.
Hall is the entrepreneurial ecosystem builder for the Staunton Creative Community Fund in Staunton, Virginia. The Staunton Creative Community Fund is dedicated to helping small businesses and is the local hub for entrepreneurial innovation. In his role, Hall oversees the development and implementation of the Shenandoah Valley’s first business accelerator program.
He was also a nominee for the 2020 Shenandoah Valley Technology Council awards for his innovation in K-12 education.
“This new initiative identifies entrepreneurs in various stages of development who have high growth potential and help them develop a plan, find the resources and make the connections to grow their business and make an impact on the greater Shenandoah Valley,” said Hall.
The most rewarding experience of Hall’s career was helping found the nonprofit, Valley Makers Association, that focuses on providing tools and resources to creatives and manufacturers in the Winchester/Frederick County region. Working with Valley Makers Association led Hall to begin to manufacture devices for people with disabilities and he eventually became the Virginia Chapter Leader for Makers Making Change, which creates assistive devices for those in need at little to no cost to the individual.
Shenandoah prepared Hall for his career by helping him understand the organizational dynamics of the workplace and gave him the skills to understand how teams and leaders make decisions and function in groups. “As an ecosystem builder, understanding group dynamics and how to work within, between, and outside groups of people is key to my success and, ultimately, the success of the ecosystems I work in,” said Hall.
Hall’s advice to students is: “Entrepreneurial ecosystem building is a fairly new field, so it is hard to imagine how it will develop in the next 10 years. Staying creative and flexible while continuing to be a life-long learner will be important.”
Written by Harley Ryan ’16
Assistant Director of Donor & Alumni Relations