Will Deyamport, III, earned his Ed.D. in educational leadership from Capella University. He’s an instructional technologist for Hattiesburg Public Schools. Follow him @peoplegogy.
What did you hope for in terms of employment as you completed your PhD?
Originally, I had hopes of becoming a professor and one day leading a digital learning center or institute at a university. That all changed once I started doing the research on adjunct pay and benefits. (There are no benefits.) I soon realized that becoming a university professor wasn’t in the cards for me. Especially because I have this terrible habit of liking to eat and having a place to live.
What was your first post-PhD job?
I actually started working part-time as an instructional technologist for a public school district a month and a half before I graduated. I am in the process of looking at other options for the fall, but I plan to be rehired full-time for next school year.
What do you do now?
I work as an instructional technologist. I train and coach teachers how to use various web tools and social technologies for teaching and learning and for professional development. I also create training videos, and have developed a self-directed technology online course for teachers on Edmodo.
What kind of tasks do you do on a daily and weekly basis?
During the school year, I research different tech tools, train teachers and parent educators, and I network with other educators and instructional technologists. Since the school year has ended, I have hosted technology-focused webinars, created training videos, and I have Skype’d into an educational technology undergraduate course, discussing what technology is available and how teachers are using various tools to engage their students on multiple levels.
What most surprises you about your job?
I am blown away at the wealth of technology the district has. Every teacher has a Macbook Pro, and most teachers have a projector and either a Smartboard, a Promethean board, or an Epson Interactive Whiteboard. This is a dream job for an instructional technologist.
I have also been surprised at the tremendous support I have received at the executive level. It is always a bonus to work somewhere where your work is appreciated.
What are your favourite parts of your job?
I absolutely love talking with teachers and sharing my passion for digital learning. I always get excited about conducting workshops. I also love having access to a number of technology tools at my fingertips. I cannot say this enough. This is a great job for an instructional technologist.
What would you change about it if you could?
I wouldn’t have an office. I love being at the schools. If it were up to me, I’d be at the schools four days a week and would work from home on Fridays. There is nothing like being at a school. The energy boost I get is indescribable.
What’s next for you, career-wise?
I would like to be an instructional technologist for the next five to seven years, become a director of technology for another five to seven years, and then move into an executive level position, overseeing the integration of technology at the curricular level.
What advice or thoughts do you have for post-PhDs in transition now?
Follow your passions. Look for career opportunities that stir your soul. I have been blessed to find a career path that not only allows me to use the skills and research as a newly minted doctor of education; I have also found something that speaks to my need to be social as well as my passion for digital media.