CIIS alum Irene Bradford (CLN '99) is a licensed psychologist and founding principal of the Bradford Institute and Bradford Leadership Group. Utilizing a customized approach to senior executive coaching and leadership development, she has worked extensively throughout the U.S., Asia, Europe, and Latin America. In addition to her doctoral degree in CIIS, she holds a bachelor's degree in economics from Wheaton College and a master's degree in counseling from the University of New Hampshire.
What drew you to CIIS?
In my master's program, I was increasingly drawn to Eastern thought and meditation. I was fortunate to have a CIIS alum, Dr. Paul Cody, as one of my supervisors. He practiced Taoism and embodied the integration of East and West that I was seeking. Paul was also on my master's thesis committee, where I applied Jungian theory to my topic, and I paid attention to the synchronicities surrounding me.
Why is CIIS important to the world?
Along with the academic rigor and the sponsorship of cutting-edge psychological thought and leaders in our field, CIIS's students and alums are in various stages of waking up to a higher consciousness. The ripple effects of this process are felt in our family, our communities, our practices, and the way we approach the world. In this way, CIIS impacts the world profoundly.
How has CIIS inspired and supported your personal and professional development?
CIIS gave me a strong foundation to recreate my world. I came to CIIS after a career in business, initially believing I would leave corporate America behind. By the time I graduated, I realized that I didn't have to abandon my natural talents and step into a different world. I could bring CIIS to corporate America in my own small way. Just as I wanted the equanimity and breadth that Dr. Paul Cody had, many of my clients expressed directly that they wanted the presence and breadth with which I approached my work.
How have you seen CIIS grow?
CIIS has grown in so many ways. It becomes more and more financially grounded. Its use of technology to reach out and let the world know its value is critical. Its public programs continue to reflect current issues and trends in psychology, healing, and philosophy. The faculty and staff continue to be at the top of their fields. And of course, more students are applying and that is an optimistic statement of our present and our future.
What do you believe is its future?
More of the same, really. I think of the adage that says, "When the student is ready the teacher will appear." As more people commit to a path of awakening, CIIS will prepare them for their personal growth and to imaginatively bring that growth into their world.
Why have you remembered CIIS in your will?
I really believe in CIIS's mission. I notice universities and colleges adding consciousness studies programs and schools; while that is great, at CIIS, the exploration of consciousness underlies every degree.