Raedell Wallace is the Co-Director of Career and Professional Development at the Institute. Her work focuses on the Institute’s Career Development Services Center, which provides free, comprehensive career development services to all current and aspiring early childhood professionals. Their services include academic planning and advisement, career and vocational assessment, resume preparation, interview and job search strategies, and teacher certification support. We asked Raedell to share some of her reflections about her work with us.
What is your current role? In your own words, how would you describe the work you do?
The Career Development Services Center (CDSC) is the one-stop-shop for everyone who has or wants a career in early childhood – advising, job search support, career exploration, professional development planning, and more! One-on-one or in small groups, our team helps individuals assess where they are currently and determine the steps necessary to create and achieve their goals.
Who do you work most closely with at the Institute? What outside partners/organizations do you work with?
The CDSC works closely with many different city agencies and organizations where our clients originate and where many of them end up employed. We also work with the CUNY colleges and universities to support our client's coursework needs. Our internal work is most closely linked to the Aspire registry, where the individuals we support are able to document their professional development and progress towards their goals.
What motivated you to work in the early childhood field?
Our work, at its core, is pursuing the best for young children. For us that means making sure that the adults responsible for their care and education are well prepared and highly skilled.
If you could learn a new skill today, what would it be?
One new skill I want to learn is how to best use data to inform our practice and tell the compelling story of the early childhood workforce we serve.
What brings you joy in your work?
The best thing about our work is knowing that we've impacted the life of an individual that will ultimately go on to impact the life of a child. This is what brings us to work every day, and what we want to be remembered for.
If you had one piece of advice for a new early childhood teacher, what would it be?
In spite of all you face every day, at the heart of your work are children – and they always deserve the very best we have to offer.
To learn more about the Career Development Services Center, please visit http://www.earlychildhoodny.org/cdsc/.