Jaime Diglio ’00
Emily Cisek ’11.
Alumnae reflect on embracing uncertainty, shifting perspective at TEDxBryantU
Mar 03, 2023, by Danny Lamere
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On February 25, Bryant University hosted its sixth annual TEDxBryantU, featuring speakers from the Bryant community who shared “ideas worth spreading.” This year’s event, themed “Reboot and Refresh,” was held in Janikies Auditorium, utilizing the signature “TEDTalks” model to share brief lectures that spark imagination, embrace possibility, and catalyze impact.

Among this year’s speakers were alumnae Jaime Diglio ’00 and Emily Cisek ’11, who shared their unique perspectives in thought-provoking 15-minute talks for an enthusiastic audience of students, faculty, staff, and community members.

Choosing a path to self-fulfillment

For Diglio, taking the stage at TEDxBryantU was an opportunity to deepen her ongoing connections to her alma mater. “I come back quite often,” she says. “I’m speaking at the upcoming Women’s Summit for the 4th year in a row; I also work with the sales team. Any time there’s an opportunity to come back, I do.” She says her time at Bryant gave her a strong foundation that led to her career success. “I had such a great experience here,” she says. “It’s the perfect slogan, making yourself ‘real-world ready.’ Bryant did a great job helping me prepare for life after college.”


Emily Cisek ’11
Jaime Diglio ’00. 

In her TED Talk, “From WAR Room to WIN Room: Change Your Room, Change Your Life,” Diglio described the moment that shifted her perspective for good. After years of devoting her energy to a successful career as a sales leader, Diglio says the stress finally caught up with her. One day, she suddenly lost all feeling in her legs; doctors told her it was a stress response. “Hitting that wall and seeing how I was living — I was ‘winning,’ but I was empty,” she says. She realized she had spent her career striving to achieve external measures of success instead of pursuing what she really wanted. In her talk, she shared the tool she developed to shift from a self-defeating mindset to a winning mindset, a tool that changed her life. “Winning starts from within,” she says. “True success can only happen when you decide what you want for yourself first.”

“Each of us has the ability to shift at any moment. It’s your choice.”

Now, as a career and performance coach, Diglio trains others on how to shift out of the “WAR Room,” where, as she says, “we spend our time focused on comparison and self-criticism, at war with ourselves” to the “WIN Room,” where success is measured by our values, unique goals and internal motivations. “Each of us has the ability to shift at any moment,” she says. “It’s your choice.”

Embracing uncertainty

Cisek, CEO and co-founder of The Postage, a digital estate planning platform, reflects on a moment during her time as a Bryant student that changed the direction of her career. “I always knew I was different,” she says. “I think part of finding your voice is that there are going to be points where you have to make decisions that are not what other people want.” On the advice of her risk-averse father, Cisek says, she studied accounting at Bryant until her junior year, when an accounting professor took her aside and asked, “Is this really what you want to do?” The question was a wake-up call to Cisek, and she says she switched her major to marketing, went home, and told her parents, “Just trust me.”

Now nearing her fourth year with The Postage, Cisek continues to expand her business, and she says she often draws on the skills she learned as a student at Bryant. “The fundamentals of working with people  being able to inspire and work in group projects — really help,” she says.

When she took the stage at TEDxBryantU for her TED Talk, “From Transition to Triumph: Navigating the ‘What’s Next,’” Cisek encouraged attendees to embrace the opportunities presented by moments of uncertainty, instead of shying away. Her parents watched from home on a live stream, she says, a full-circle moment that reminded her of her own liminal moments in life. “My dad said, ‘Wow, you’re really inspiring and motivational,’” Cisek says with a smile. “And I was like, ‘Yeah, Dad, what do you think I do all day?’”

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