OVERCOMING THE IMPOSTER EXPERIENCE: HOW SAGE 2YC TRANSFORMED ME INTO AN AGENT OF CHANGE FOR GEOSCIENCE EDUCATION AT A TWO-YEAR COLLEGE
In 2013, I attended a SAGE 2YC student success workshop where I was exposed to many education-related topics that I did not fully understand nor know how to use. I became overwhelmed and felt too underprepared to teach effectively. This feeling fed into my imposter experience accentuating the belief that I was not qualified for my position. However, in 2015 I was invited to be part of a new SAGE 2YC project called “Faculty as Change Agents.” My invitation came as a surprise and illustrates a common aspect of imposter syndrome: Heather MacDonald and her team saw my competence and capabilities where all I could see were my deficiencies. The first “Faculty as Change Agents” workshop held in 2016 was a pivot point in my career and marked the beginning of my evolution as a professor and an agent for change. Participating in this project provided me information about education research and best practices, leadership guidance, mentorship, and peer support. SAGE 2YC offered a supportive community of people with goals similar to mine where I could grow, learn, and make mistakes without fear. I now know and believe that my place in the classroom and on campus is well deserved.
Participation in SAGE 2YC has completely transformed me. The PI team and my fellow change agents celebrate each of our successes and discuss failures helpfully. I can now confidently share my knowledge and experience with colleagues through workshops and seminars and I have assumed the mantle of leadership by helping to shape campus policies and practices. Through SAGE 2YC I shed the restraints of imposter syndrome, allowing me the freedom to grow into my role as a change agent in geoscience education.