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Managing Risk Responsibly

Shannon Hendricks M.S.L ’18 comes from a family of proud Tommies. She herself received her undergraduate degree with a BA in Accounting. Her three daughters (‘12, ‘13, ‘20) followed in her footsteps. And now, Hendricks is one of the first students at St. Thomas to earn a graduate certificate in Strategic Risk and Responsibility.

Her interest in risk management developed after 30 years of working in operations and financial areas within the insurance/reinsurance, health care and non-profit industries. “Combining my background in financial analysis with a risk-based approach helped differentiate me from my peers,” she said.

Risk management today has an interconnectedness to all areas in the organization – not only the traditional areas of auditing and finance but also governance, compliance and ethics, social responsibility and sustainability.

The Graduate Certificate in Strategic Risk and Responsibility at St. Thomas is designed in collaboration with enterprise risk management professionals. It offers a flexible curriculum with integrated coursework in risk management, compliance, governance, ethics and corporate social responsibility. The program can be completed in as little as nine months.

“The classes provided a greater focus on risk leadership, which is so important in today’s environment of creating an ethical culture for managing risk and compliance,” said Hendricks. Students not only learn the technical skills, but develop the qualities necessary to becoming an adaptable leader.

Hendricks feels fortunate to be one of the first students to combine these areas of programming. She’s taken what she’s learned to consult with nonprofits and provide support in evaluating and analyzing their governance, risk and compliance issues. 

"Being an ethical leader today means looking beyond the basics to being a transformational leader. At St. Thomas you learn to lead with respect, honesty, empathy and accountability.”