What’s Now? Goals for the Academic Year

Last night, I wrote about contemplating the question of “What’s next?” in relation to my professional career. As I was writing, I was thinking that I should focus on the present (something we’re taught to do as counselors) and enjoy my first year working at UMD. I have a long career ahead of me and I don’t need to rush into figuring everything out right now. I’m only 28 and that is rather young for working in higher education (I think that’s the result of needing at least a master’s degree to really break into any department). So, I might as well figure out what I want to accomplish in my first year on the job at UMD.

Here are some of the preliminary thoughts I’ve had in relation to goals for the upcoming academic year. (For those reading this who are not in the world of education, I live my life as if August is the first month of the year.) Also, some of these goals are personal ones and don’t have much to do with my job.

  • Expand on the roles that I’ve found myself gravitating towards (technology & work/intern abroad). Read more about these areas. I need to kick my Input & Learner strengths into gear.
  • Involvement in on-campus activities. I don’t know yet what this is going to look like. It could be being on a committee of some sort or attending events from plays to hockey games to support students.
  • Join professional organizations in Minnesota. I plan on being here awhile, so I might as well get to know people working at other institutions.
  • Increase my involvement in ACPA. I’ve already volunteered to review proposals for convention programs for the national convention taking place next March in Louisville.
  • Write more. I’ve been thinking about proposing guest posts for a few sites and am excited about the prospect of branching out on my writing abilities.
  • Work on improving my blogging skills. I posted on this a bit ago.
  • Have fun at work!
  • Learn more about the hard sciences (biology, chemistry, engineering, physics, etc.). This is definitely needed seeing as biology is one of the top 3 majors at UMD (along with psychology & communication) and we have med & pharmacy schools on campus.
  • Earn my certifications for the Strong Interest Inventory and StrengthsQuest. These are two assessments offered by my office and I need to be able to interpret them for students. Training for the Strong is already underway!
  • Cut down on my soda intake and increase my water intake. I’m doing well on the water front and not so much on the soda front. However, I haven’t been conciously working on the soda cutdown much lately.

I’m sure this list will change as time goes on…especially as I begin to flesh out my role as a career counselor. I’ll try to keep you updated on my goals as the school year progresses.

What is one of your goals for the next year?


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