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Volunteering With AACTE: An Opportunity for Everyone

VolunteerYou are vital to AACTE. Your membership, your service, your knowledge, and your presence are vital to the organization. 

As chair of the Committee on Membership Development and Capacity Building, I know firsthand the benefits of membership in AACTE. However, I wasn’t always aware that I could contribute to the organization. Throughout my career, I have consistently worked at AACTE member institutions, but I assumed certain roles in the organization, such as serving on a committee, were reserved for administrators. At that time, little did I know that faculty, staff, and students are fully vested members of AACTE through their institution’s membership.

After attending and presenting at several annual meetings, I knew I wanted to get more involved. I became a member of the committee when I was an associate professor of education. Through interaction with AACTE members with various backgrounds, I soon realized there are opportunities for everyone to become actively involved in AACTE.

When I joined the committee I never thought I would one day chair the committee. I once again found myself thinking that those positions must be reserved for administrators, or persons from larger institutions, I kept making excuses about why I would never be able to work in a leadership role. I soon realized the only thing stopping me from participating were my own reservations.

As a member and chair, I know how deliberate the organization is in ensuring that there is representation from each geographic region and various types of institutions. So, if you are thinking like I was, you can stop talking yourself out of getting involved. You are needed and you are vital to the organization. This is our organization. Our collective voices are needed now more than ever to advocate for our profession.  

What I enjoy most about the opportunity to serve on the Committee on Membership Development and Capacity Building are the people we meet and having a voice in the overall membership experience. As committee members we have the opportunity to interact with new members and ensure the services and resources offered by AACTE are timely and beneficial.

I stated this to new members and it still rings true today: As a new faculty member I never realized the plethora of resources offered by AACTE. As I progressed in my career, I began to depend on the wealth of information provided by the organization, such as the annual conference, webinars, Journal of Teacher Education, and Ed Prep Matters. Membership has afforded me the opportunity to engage in the profession on the national level and network with others interested in educator preparation. As I prepare for my new role as associate dean, I have become reliant on the organization to keep me apprised of the latest news and issues facing our profession. AACTE is vital for the profession and your active participation and membership is vital for AACTE.

To learn more about the many volunteer leadership positions available to AACTE, watch the video below.

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