My professional Learning Network Plan image is being hosted at Bubbl.us
What is a Professional Learning Network?
At the moment it is a set of people who I an rely on to support me if I am applying for jobs or considering a life or career change. They are people I’ve met either through being a student or by being a teacher. My former students are a part of my PLN because some still let me help them out and I need that reassurance some times.
My current and future PLN:
Things have changed so frequently in the last seven years that I don’t have many relationships that exist face to face on a day to day basis. I don’t leave my home to do things pretty much any more so the friendships I have are ones that I was able to make when I was a part of organizations like schools or where I worked. I now use Facebook, old fashioned email, and Linked-In to maintain connections with former students and friends. Since my familiarity with people in person is getting to be a smaller group relative to the people I associate with online or virtually, my main connections with people are like I’ve been saying, through virtual communications. I now use Twitter to maintain awareness of people I may want to get to know better when I start looking for a real job. I also use it to get my “name out there” in case something comes along and I end out connecting with someone on Linked-In as well. I already got a job because of a suggestion someone made on Linked-In. Strangers are becoming a part of my PLN because they will post things in Linked-In or in Twitter and I’ll read what they post and act on it.
My future PLN will grow as I get to know more virtual people. I hope my colleagues at BSU become key players in my furture network and it would be awesome if I actually got to know some of my professors even though it is more difficult to hang out with them when I live in CA and they are in ID. I made a friend in the EDTECH class I took this summer and am thrilled that I am developing a friendship with her. I seriously think it may be possible to continue a professional relationship with her after I graduate. I am not someone who needs to collect friends; I am quite content if I get to know a few quality people who get me to think and can expand my perspectives. Most of the individuals at Facebook are friends whereas I maintain connections with more professional relationships through Linked-In and Twitter. Some of my professional connections have been made at Facebook, but for the most part I keep that set of friends as social connections. Now if they led to a job, that would be great! No complaints if someone wants to help me find employment. 🙂
As for this class preparing me for networking with others… honestly it hasn’t. I was not able to connect with classmates in this class like I have in other ones that I’ve taken online. When I read that I could do the assignments with another person in the class, nobody came to mind because I did not get to know anybody. Unfortunately the segregation into groups was not something that worked for me with respect to getting to know my classmates.