Honoring Pathways to Success

By Andra D’Amico

As NCDA career development professionals, including counselors, coaches, educators, researchers, facilitators or administrators, we aspire to help our students and/or clients attain fulfilling careers and life goals, as emphasized in our NCDA mission. Tangible, authentic learning opportunities come in many forms. For example, internships, higher education and service come to mind when assisting others with counseling and career guidance. However, recognizing success in our peers who continue to promote support and advocacy, and go above and beyond in their field, is another example of crucial work we do as career development professionals. This recognition can begin with YOU - by nominating yourself, your organization or another NCDA member whose success you would like to celebrate! Now is the time to learn more about how to submit a nomination for 2023.

The NCDA Awards Committee is excited to be a leader in this endeavor. There is no better way to create momentum for success in our field then by recognizing the great work being done by our NCDA members. This year, the NCDA Awards Committee conducted an in-depth interview with Ahmed Mostafa, a recent NCDA Merit Award recipient. The following conversation with Ahmed Mostafa was captured to highlight his career beliefs and the global impacts he has made in our field as well as the exploration of what's next. Here, we share an excerpt of this interview:

Andra D'Amico (member of the NCDA Awards Committee):

You already have made significant contributions to the field of career development by educating and mentoring career counseling students, developing leadership in exemplary career programs, conducting significant research in the field, and/or advocating to inform and persuade policy makers about career development. Tell us more.

Ahmed Mostafa:

Since the moment I heard about career development, I felt that it should be a lifestyle, not just a job. It is not putting people in the right job or right direction; it is about letting people own their life and take control of it. This is how I see career development, and this is the message that I want people to understand.

As an ongoing Co-Chair of NCDA’s Global Connections Committee (GCC), I have been coordinating with our GCC Leadership Team, 75 committee members and the Board Liaison to find out more about, as well as respond to the needs of, NCDA International members. According to the NCDA Membership Report shared during the June 2022 NCDA Global Career Development Conference in Anaheim, international members total more than 700 members.

Last May, members of the GCC Leadership Team met with one of our larger international populations from the Middle East & North Africa (MENA) region. The meeting involved a sharing of interests and needs. We found that professional development closer to home was a major interest, so some of the GCC Leadership Team helped develop a Arab Career Development Conference (ACDC) scheduled for February 27 - March 1, 2023 conference. We recently heard from NCDA President Lakeisha Mathews that she will be able to travel to Egypt to attend and speak. The entire NCDA membership was invited to submit presentation proposals and we were excited to receive several. If you are interested in attending, please visit https://acdc.growat.co.

Andra: Wow, Ahmed, it sounds like you are still continuing to demonstrate all the NCDA Merit Award accomplishments, including making significant contributions to the career development field, educating and mentoring, developing leadership and advocating to inform and persuade others about career development. Thank you for taking the time to share with us your ongoing pursuits.


Call to Action: Nominate Yourself or Someone Else for NCDA’s 2023 Awards

Did Ahmed’s story inspire you? Who will be NCDA's 2023 award winners, sharing more inspiring stories in Career Convergence or Career Developments? You can be a part of answering that question!

NCDA and the Awards Committee invite you to submit an award nominee for 2023. Nominations are due January 31, 2023 at midnight EST. Questions may be addressed to the Award Committee Chairs, Gaeun Seo, gseo@princeton.edu, and Jessica Ayub, jessica.ayub@normandale.edu. Please start the process early as the nomination form, references and supporting documents are all due at the same time in one submission. Although self-nomination is encouraged, please keep in mind that every nomination packet requires a nominator and two references. If you self-nominate, you have one less person speaking on your behalf. To ease the nomination process, we invite you to review our Sample Packets for Individual and Group Nominations.

Please note that all nominators and nominees for the following awards are required to be NCDA members except for the Legislative Award (local, state, and national legislators are eligible nominees for this award):

  • Diversity InitiativeAward Ribbon
  • Eminent Career (this requires a separate nomination process)
  • Exemplary Career Center (2 Awards): (1) Education, Government & Business; (2) Non-Profit,Organizations
  • Graduate Student Research
  • International Practitioner of the Year
  • Legislative
  • Merit
  • NCDA Fellow
  • Outstanding Career Practitioner
  • Service to International Students

Access to the 2023 Awards Nomination forms is open on the NCDA Awards webpage. One winner will be selected per category unless otherwise stated in the award’s description. Winners will be featured in the NCDA Career Developments publication in the fall of 2023. On behalf of NCDA, the Awards Committee and all NCDA’s constituencies, we look forward to your nomination submissions.

This is the perfect time of year to remember that recognizing success in our peers who continue to promote support and go above and beyond in their field is crucial work we do as career development professionals. Award winners will be announced at the 2023 Global Career Development Conference in Chicago, IL, June 29- July 1, 2023.


Andra D AmicoAndra D’Amico, GCDF, is a Career Educator Technician for Shasta Union High School District. Andra holds degrees in Business, Sociology, Social Science as well as a California teaching credential for Social Science. Andra has been a licensed Realtor and business owner for over three decades in areas of low income housing, industrial sewing, manufacturing, trucking and land development. NCDA Awards Committee & Co-Lead for both the NCDA Kenneth B. Hoyt Career Education Practitioner & NCDA Outstanding Career Practitioner Awards. In 2017  Andra was the National Career Education Award Recipient for the NCDA Kenneth B. Hoyt Career Education Practitioner. She can be reached at adamico@suhsd.net


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