Workshop for Early Career Geoscience Faculty: Providing resources and support for new faculty to succeed
Abstract:A vital strategy to educate future geoscientists is to support faculty at the beginning of their careers, thus catalyzing a career-long impact on the early-career faculty and on their future students. New faculty members are at a pivotal stage in their careers as they step from being research-focused graduate students and post-doctoral scholars, under the guidance of advisors, towards launching independent careers as professors. New faculty commonly, and not unexpectedly, feel overwhelmed as they face challenges to establish themselves in a new environment, prepare new courses, begin new research, and develop a network of support.
The workshop for Early Career Geoscience Faculty: Teaching, Research, and Managing Your Career has been offered annually in the U.S. since 1999. The workshop is currently offered through the National Association of Geoscience Teachers On the Cutting Edge professional development program with support from the NSF, AGU and GSA. This five-day workshop, with associated web resources, offers guidance for incorporating evidence-based teaching practices, developing a research program, and managing professional responsibilities in balance with personal lives. The workshop design includes plenary and concurrent sessions, individual consultations, and personalized feedback from workshop participants and leaders.
Since 1999, more than 850 U.S. faculty have attended the Early Career Geoscience Faculty workshop. Participants span a wide range of geoscience disciplines, and are in faculty positions at two-year colleges, four-year colleges, comprehensive universities and research universities. The percentages of women (~50%) and underrepresented participants (~8%) are higher than in the general geoscience faculty population. Multiple participants each year are starting positions after receiving all or part of their education outside the U.S. Collectively, participants report that they are better prepared to move forward with their careers as a result of the workshop, that they plan to incorporate evidence-based teaching in their classrooms, and that they leave the workshop with a network of support and the resources needed to enable them succeed.