1.Why have you chosen to join and stay involved in OCDA?
I first heard about OCDA back in 2007 when I began working at Chemeketa Community College. I had been part of other professional associations for employment and training and when I heard OCDA was focused on career development which I have essentially been doing since early 80s I was intrigued. After attending my first PDI and hearing Rich Feller speak about career planning in turbulent times and being with a roomful of similarly minded professionals who loved to think about career development ... I was hooked and became a Board Member as the Membership Coordinator. I have yet to be disappointed with any of the PDIs even when I had no idea who these presenters were as I waited to hear from them ... the work I do today at Chemeketa is enhanced with the strategies I have learned over the last 7 yrs as I embed them within my existing tool-kit of personal experiences.
It was a delight to work with such a blend of professionals on the OCDA Board and to watch the involvement of technology and creativity in enhancing its work to encompass the dependable strengths of the membership, to help engage membership to find their inner purpose, to expand the diversity of our membership and finally to express our collective strengths back to the community we serve.
2.What do you most enjoy about career development work?
While seeing the successful job seeking is always of value .... truthfully I enjoy seeing that moment where the "lightbulb" goes on for someone when they finally figure (accept) what it is that makes them passionate. To realize that this passion must be met somehow for satisfaction in life, and where possible, all the more to find a way to connect their passion to their career and their life. It is not only in being able to create strong paper presentations that will get an employer interested in speaking with an applicant ... it is that applicant presenting themselves in person with a purity of passion for how they can be of value to the employer.
3.Tell us about your organization and practice.
I work as a Counselor at Chemeketa Community College in which I work with students to develop academic paths to known career choices as well as students who have absolutely (or at least they say they have none) no idea what they should do. One strategy that has really become very effective for me is to incorporate a version of Mark Savicka's Narrative Counseling. Through a sequence of questionings and introspective interrogation more often than not students who walk in undecided become aware of their passion, if not purpose for how they want to add value in life. That for me is a good day at work.
4.If you had to pick one favorite tool or resource you use regularly in your work, what would it be?
Without a doubt it is a variation of the Narrative Counseling. I say a version as I do not always have an option to begin a lengthier counseling process. Sometimes this may be my only contact with the student. Having them identify motto, role models,and consider voids of life more often than not help the student to have that lightbulb of awareness switched on with unawareness changing to creative exploration of possibilities.
5.What is one thing most people might not know about you?
Hmmm ... that I am an INTP? That my top 5 Strengths are: Input, Ideation, Empathy, Learner, and Intellection? That I enjoy listening to Gogal Bordello? That I enjoy seeking the answer to "Why?"