Defining Their Own Success: Scholars' Views After A Faculty Development Program

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Academic pediatrics




Career Satisfaction; Community of Practice; Faculty Development Program; Medical Education; Professional Identity Formation


INTRODUCTION: Educator roles in medicine are expanding yet career paths and definitions of successful careers are not uniformly agreed upon. Educator success from their own perspective has not been broadly explored as these studies usually occur from the institutional or organizational viewpoint. This study examined the impact of a national educational faculty development program (FDP) for academic pediatricians on educators' self-description of their own professional and personal success. METHODS: This was a cross-sectional, qualitative study of FDP alumni between 2019-2021. Interviews explored participants perspectives on their professional success, and supports and barriers. Using an iterative process, thematic analysis of the data identified 6 themes. RESULTS: Fourteen scholars were interviewed. All felt they were successful citing both outcome and impact measures categorized into 6 themes: personal attributes, adequate resources and barriers, foundational skill development, experiencing strong mentoring and networking, engaging, and being connected to a community of practice and self-identifying as a medical educator. To view the data holistically, a model incorporating 3 frameworks was developed. DISCUSSION: These educators viewed themselves as successful academic educators. While papers, promotions and positions were important, educators viewed impact in mentoring and collaborations with others, along with acquired expertise and an expanded viewpoint of the field and themselves as equally important. Educators and leaders could use these elements for their own self-assessment and support, FDP development and enhancement, and for investment in programs and faculty educators.