For the last eight years, every job I have had has been paid through grant funding. As a result, I have changed jobs every two years as the grant funds reached their end. I am again in year-two and have started updating my resume because, once again, the grant funds are ending. It has become almost routine for me to be on some form of job search.
My friends all respond with shock and dismay when it becomes official that my job is going away. I do not always react with ecstatic joy when I find out there are no local funds for my job, but I do go into the job with my eyes fully open, so I am never shocked when the conversation comes. Changing jobs every two years is not my ideal, but it has given me experiences I never would have had if I had maintained a traditional career track.
As much as I have learned and gained in the last eight years, I want to settle into a position for a longer period of time in order to fully apply the many things I have learned to the position. Contrary to what non-educators may think, making systemic change at any level of school takes a full three to five years. I want that challenge.
Not every person is right for every position. The key to systemic success is finding the best fit in a position. There are positions open on my current campus, but I do not fit the profile of the person who would be most effective in that position. No matter how much I love the campus and am passionate about the students and staff, I do not have the skill-set that the position needs to be most successful. My love for the campus and passion for the students and staff would rather see the best person have the job as much as I would like to remain there. Education works best when the correct person is in the position for which they are best suited.
By working grant-funded positions, I have had the fortune of changing jobs every two years and building a unique skill-set. As I have searched for jobs (and LinkedIn makes suggestions) I have found campus level jobs, central administration jobs, and jobs across the spectrum in corporate education (testing companies, textbook companies, and professional development providers). My challenge is finding the right position and getting it. I am going to miss my current position, but I look forward to the next opportunity that awaits me.