My Professional Portfolio
by Helen Barrett


About me
My Goals and Personal Mission
I believe that all portfolios need to include three forms of reflection, focusing on the past, present, and future. These questions are:
* What? (the artifacts that I have collected from the past)
* So What? (what these artifacts show about my learning at the present time)
* Now What? (my future learning goals)

So, here are my future goals. This portfolio comes at a time when I am winding up my PT3 grant, and getting ready to retire from the University of Alaska Anchorage. I am using this portfolio to help me reflect on my strengths and how that will contribute to my future professional direction.
Achievement Plan:   After I retire, my husband and I want to begin providing training to "baby boomers" and senior citizens on using digital storytelling to preserve their memories and life stories for future generations; our mission statement: "using today's technology to tell yesterday's stories to tomorrow's generations." The current popularity of scrapbooking and genealogy all indicate that there is an interest to preserve these memories. But those who study genealogy know that we can find the dates and facts about a life, but stories that are not preserved are lost forever. Everyone has a story to tell. Digital storytelling is one way to preserve and share our family legacies.

Perhaps we can also work into the process a "retirement transition" focus, using digital family stories as a way of finding a new purpose in retirement after a very busy working life. Learning to share digital stories could become a powerful transition activity. And in the process, new retirees could learn technology skills that they might have missed in their professional careers.

Here is an opportunity for schools, as well, to bring this digital storytelling process to their communities, to match young people who have the technology skills with older people who have the stories to be preserved. Then, we can truly become a community of lifelong learners who share our knowledge and wisdom with each other.
Last Modified:   10/08/04