Goal Oriented Steps

Sometimes people can’t help but laugh when hearing how many professional (and informal) advocates would respond to being asked to state their goals. My site supervisor at Pittsburgh Action Against Rape often jokes that his goal is to put himself and his coworkers out of business. This is a lighthearted response to the question, but it rings a lot of truth as well. For people who truly care about ending social justice issues, in this case gender/sexual violence/discrimination, the end goal is to no longer have any work to do. The goal is to not need advocates, because these issues aren’t hurting people. A common secondary response to this usually involves disappointment at the unspoken thought that this will probably never actually happen. Many people don’t want to admit it, but they see those goals as incredibly farfetched and unlikely. As I was reflecting on this, I spent some time thinking about my goals in this line of work, both in this internship and beyond. While I would definitely agree with my supervisor that my goal is for us all to be out of business here, I can also respond with some specific action step goals that I think would be much more realistic and encouraging to most listeners. During the timespan of this internship, one of my goals is to think. To think more critically about how these issues are affecting higher education at the structural and individual level. Another one of my goals is to teach. I want to teach others what practical roles we can all play in addressing these issues in higher education to make real change. I have a lot of goals for this internship, and the future of my own career and advocacy. As I continue learning with such a great group of people, I am excited to discover goals I didn’t even know I had, and continue taking steps that will prepare me to be the best I can be in my future career and endeavors.


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