There’s an ancient proverb that says, When embarking on a journey, never ask directions from someone who has never left home. Dr. Bessie and I know that when you look for a mentor you want someone who has been on the dissertation journey so they can help you by sharing their experiences. Same is true when becoming a mentor for someone else.
One of my takeaways from graduate school was that we learned to be scholar-practitioners. Dr. Patti and I continue to transition into our new roles: to conduct research and write as scholars. But the practitioner part is not an easy transition. This part requires an active, conscious effort to apply new knowledge to practice your craft.
There’s a Chinese saying that goes: If you want happiness for a lifetime, help the next generation. Dr. Patti and I call this paying it forward. As scholars, social entrepreneurs, and educators, we feel obligated to give back. It’s interesting that the realization to use education to give back didn’t really materialize until graduate school.