“Personal Development Workshop” – Event Report

“Personal Development Workshop” was held on Thursday, October 28, 2019 at Meeting Room 1&2, 4th floor, Student Plaza, Higashi-Hiroshima Campus.  This workshop had been held to provide guidance to Hiroshima University Special Postdoctoral Researchers (“SPR”) right after their appointment, but it’s got combined with the pre-training workshop for the HIRAKU Long-Term Internship participants.  They are expected to learn how to assess their skills and competencies using Vitae Researcher Development Framework (“Vitae RDF”) and set up action plans to further develop them.

We had seven SPR 2019-2 badges and 5 doctoral students as targeting audience of the day.  They are all planning to participate in the HIRAKU Long-Term internship.  They were divided into 4 groups and introduced each other as an icebreaking activity, then three pairs were selected to introduce the other partner to all in the classroom.  As we see the “ice” got clearly broken, we have started the self-analysis, using the Vitae RDF cards.  All picked up one or more skills they excel at and those they need development on, came up with their past experiences to prove them each and shared the results amongst the group.  There were some who picked up the same cards, but their evidence (to prove their assessment) were quite different.

The second exercise was to pick up skills they would like to develop through the SPR period of 12 months or through the long-term internship.  Referring to the model presentations by the past SPRs, they built action plans to develop those skills.  Having the SPR2019-1 badges join each group, they shared their action plans and discussed how they can improve each plan.  A few of them shared their action plans with the rest of the classroom, asking for more opinions/ideas for improvement, which have further refined their plans.  They are expected to continue the assessment by themselves, based on the exercise they went through.

We have received quite positive feedback from the participants as follows:

  • It helped me realize my areas for improvement, which was something I had been turning a blind eye to so far.
  • It was really a learning experience to me, listening to the opinions/concerns from the other doctorates/SPRs.
  • To find a best-matching company for internship, it is critical to well understand myself in depth.  I’d like to spend enough time to complete the self-assessment, based on today’s exercise.
  • We have exchanged views/opinions amongst SPRs, which helped me identify the problem I had been unaware of.
  • It was precious time to me, touching base with the young researchers from different disciplines.