I have recently joined the newly formed EDC Early-Career Educational Developers Action Group – to co-investigate the experience of being an early-career educational developer (ED). While my hope is to contribute to this worthwhile effort for new EDs navigate their role, I know the real beneficiary will be me throughout this process – with structured opportunities to collaborate nationally, to reflect my own lived experiences, to articulate my questions, to examine my assumptions and beliefs, and many more learning opportunities. Already, I experience a deep sense of trust, belonging, and comunity, despite the fact that I have never met any of the group members in-person and have only connected virtually on a few occasions.
Guided by our current contexts and emerging needs, we collaborate to develop resources to build our collective capacity in navigating challenges and opportunities in our roles as early-career EDs. At the moment, the group is gearing up to present an interactive workshop at the EDC 2019 virtual conference – Building bridges instead of walls: Drawing on collective wisdom to navigate the contradictions of educational development as an early career professional. Our goal is to consider how we, as individuals and as a community through EDC, can better support EDs’ resilience in their navigation of the contradictory nature of the work, with special emphasis on supporting EDs early in their careers. We are looking forward to learning with and from the EDC community.
Our longer-term plan is to conduct a series of surveys and interviews to distill the unique experiences of early-career EDs with goals to put together a guide for new EDs!