Alas, the pedagogy class had to come to an end. Sadly, I will no longer have a chilly Wednesday evening in Torgerson Hall with my fellow GEDI trainees. We have all graduated to GEDI Knights! 🙂
With that time coming to a close, I still have found myself reflecting on the things we learned over the course of the semester. Especially since I will venture into my first official teaching experience this summer with the DSM5 course for the incoming counselor master program. Which I am really looking forward to, by the way!
How do I balance my passion for the counseling profession without overwhelming the 15 brand new to the program students? How do I tailor what I teach to their developmental needs but still have them gain confidence with a lot of material (our DSM is a diagnostic manual with most ALL of the diagnosis codes and descriptions for mental health concerns)? Fortunately, I will not be walking this path alone. I will be under the guidance of a seasoned counselor educator whom I respect and working with another fellow PhD student in the program whom I also respect. So I feel confident I will learn so much and hone my teaching and planning skills greatly. Greatly enough to prepare me for more teaching experiences to come in the fall.
The first part of my summer I will plan and work on the material we will be covering in class starting this July. Exciting stuff for me which has been a long time in the coming. My program at VT has really been preparing me well, I think. Guess the students will be truth speakers at the end of the course with my feedback. But I am a GEDI Knight and I can remember that the force is with me!
What is a GEDI Knight you ask? It is a Graduate Education Development Institute (GEDI) at Virginia Tech. It is designed to address the professional career development of the graduate students in knowledge, leadership, scholarship inquiry, and social responsibility. The contemporary pedagogy class is one of many that will help build a stronger professional community. Because of this course, I have opted to make preparing the future professoriate my cognate (read: certificate to enhance my degree). We are “knighted” at the end of the pedagogy course as GEDI Knights. It is a fun thing and completely rounds off the course as a whole. It was a lot of learning and a lot of fun.
Regardless if I was labeled as “the least intimidating GEDI ever” (and you know who you are who made this remark!) I am reminded by the little, and kind of cute, Yoda. He was small in size, but wise and powerful! Yoda once said “Many of our truths we cling to depend on our point of view.” Perhaps that is the true meaning behind the course; we may need to examine our points of view to be able to realize there is more sides to things and perhaps more truths than we initially believe. There are so many wonderful and creative options to teach and learn from that it is mind blowing. I hope to capture that with my portion of the course this summer.
Finally, I will close out with a quote from William Shakespeare from A Midsummer Night’s Dream “and though she be but little, she is fierce.” I may not be the most intimidating GEDI Knight, but I am well trained by my own little GEDI Master. 🙂 Hopefully, the teaching force will be strong with me this summer as I begin this journey.