Becoming/Being a Contemporary Agent of Change

HGED 615: Becoming/Being a Contemporary Agent of Change
Laura Bestler
Iowa State University
December 2, 2008

1. What is your vision for yourself as a change agent?
Creating permanent opportunities for people to have access and contribute to an infinite amount of universal knowledge through the use of technology.

2. What three specific goals will support you in moving toward your vision of yourself as a change agent?
In order to be a change agent, it is important for me to truly understand and identify who I am and how I can contribute to a just society. I will do this through the following means:
• Being balanced: healthy – emotionally and physically.
• Being strategic with my actions by being intentional about who I am, and where I go.
• Recognizing I cannot change the world, I can only influence the change
• Strive to promote and enhance equality for all people by learning, understanding, and contributing to the world.

3. What is involved in their fulfillment?
Continually reflecting upon where I am, where I have been, and where I am going and how my world has impacted the change I wish to see in our society. Identifying sources of knowledge which may direct my goals.

4. What are the important milestones along the way to reaching these goals?
The greatest one is acknowledging whether or not there is truly a need for technology to be successful in today’s society. If there is not a need, there is no need for change. However, the research, readings, and personal account determinately identify the implicit role technology has, and will continue to have for our society. Establishing connections with people in the field of education and technology. Being recognized as a leader within the field of educational technology who supports social change.

5. What skills do you already have that will support you in reaching these goals?
From 1997-2006, I served as the Assistant Director of Student Activities for the Iowa State Memorial Union within the Division of Student Affairs at Iowa State University. I created numerous marketing pieces (i.e., websites, brochures, posters, etc.); coordinated a number of major events; developed and facilitated leadership programming initiatives; participated in the planning and support of multicultural programs; initiated the renewal of the community service program; directed the registration of 600 organizations; advised the coordination for VEISHEA’s (spring festival) overall operations; and served as adviser to a number of student organizations. I also supervised five staff members, two graduate assistants, and over twenty-five student staff members. It was an exciting opportunity to build a team, and work within our community to determine how we can better serve students.

My passion for technology and keen abilities to lead people, I believe I have the skill set to create significant change. Helping provide the link between higher education and P-12 educators to create connections with technology and resources will provide society with enormous benefits.

6. What skills you need to develop in order to reach these goals?
The greatest skill to find is time. Time continues to beat on a drum, moving faster or slower to whatever tune my mind is listening to at the moment. Strategically, time is infinitely important to how technology may provide immediate access and ability to contribute to universal knowledge available via the internet.

Credibility: Can I prove my self-worth as an academic to influence the way in which society provides resources to schools? Can my abilities strategically help universities to see how their resources and skills could substantially help P-12 education?

7. What assistance or support will you need?
I believe my education is helping me. Although, providing me with additional debt – ultimately a Ph.D. will not only give me an amazing baseline of knowledge, and skills – it will give me some credibility. The rest of it will be based upon how I am able to establish a presence online and offline within the educational communities.

8. What are the consequences if you do not reach these goals?
Personally, the rights of someone to have access and the ability to contribute to knowledge are obviously a passion of mine. It is important for people to be able to share not only with each other their viewpoints – but the entire world should be able to hear their stories.

9. What is the reward for achieving these goals?
The ability to hear everyone’s stories, globally. To learn from each other, globally. To become educated, globally. To have access to existing knowledge and contribute to future knowledge for everyone is vitally important to me, and to inhibit people from this ability would be detrimental to the ways in which we may be successful as a global society.