I’m taking a few liberties with the topic. We have some catching up to do to get you current with the various courses I’m taking as I described in My Development Plan. So for awhile we’ll use “What I learned Wednesday” for the NGS-HSC lessons and the day after Wednesday (otherwise known as Thursday) for ProGen.
My first month in the 19 month ProGen program was November 2011. The ProGen study groups are based on Professional Genealogy: A Manual for Researches, Writers, Editors, Lecturers, and Librarians (affiliate link) edited by Elizabeth Shown Mills.
Each month there is reading (mostly from the book but sometimes supplemental resources are included). The assignment has questions regarding the reading and a practical assignment. In November, we started with Professionalism and Ethics (chapters 1 and 5). Within the larger ProGen group there are smaller groups. You can review and provide feedback on your small group’s practical assignments (although sometimes it’s tough since many assignments are very specific to that person and their perspective) in addition to meeting once a month to discuss the readings (and associated questions) and the practical assignment.
The practical assignment was in two parts: first to develop your mission statement and the second to draft your genealogy resume. I developed my mission statement for a currently undeveloped genealogy research business so it will play into a later assignment…our business plans. I currently have a fairly modest genealogy resume but doing the assignment showed me how aspects of my current professional and volunteer work plays into the totality of my skills as a genealogist. I’m a Project Management Professional (PMP)® certified through the Project Management Institute® and I do volunteer work in communications. Developing the resume allowed me to see how interwoven all of my education, experience, skills, and hobbies have become. It also made it very apparent that I needed more experience in local repositories. I live in the state capital and can’t even claim experience in all of the local resources!