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Joan & Dawn: The Personal and The Professional

Joan & Dawn: The Personal and The Professional

December 14, 2018

Dear WinkWorld Readers,

As you know, my blog tends to be anything interesting, which is happening in my life.  Sometimes my blog focuses on the personal, and sometimes on the professional.  However, during my career, I found that I was not able to separate these two aspects of my life:  Who I am as a professional is informed by my personal values, experiences, and perspectives, and visa versa: Who I am as a woman is informed by the those books I have read and written, my professional experiences, and my dear colleagues.  When I first started teaching (1966, near Philadelphia), I thought I was to keep the personal and professional separate, as my teachers/professors had told me that I should. I clearly remember hearing: “Don’t smile until Christmas.”

Fortunately, I came to understand that this notion might be a bit gender-centric.  For sure, I had learned it from dear men teachers and mentors.  Somewhere about mid-career, I finally came to understand that I know nothing about being a man, but I sure know about being woman, and at least for me, the personal and professional are integrated holistically. I had to be me, and this meant, loving the kids. When I taught teenagers in AZ, I remember I started to realize that the kid who was the toughest to love, needed it the most. These personal discoveries had a profound impact on my professional career.

WinkWorld Readers, yesterday when my fingers wrote that previous paragraph, I did not know it, but simultaneously our daughter, Dawn, was creating a video “TED Talk” for a class she is taking on Women as Leaders. Dawn only has two more classes to finish the course work for her PhD, and her dissertation is conceptually well-organized already.

When I watched this video later in the day, I had to smile as she was creating a video of the personal/professional conundrum, at the same time that I was writing about it.

Hope you enjoy her video.


Dawn’s “TED Talk” video posted below.


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