We had the good fortune of connecting with Kia Edwards and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kia, can you talk to us a bit about the social impact of your business?
At Champion Instructors Education & Training we embedded equity, diversity, and inclusivity in learning into our mission. Our mission statement says, “as strength-based educators, our mission is to create innovative and conceptual education products for in-person and virtual learners of all ages, learning styles, cultural backgrounds, and professions.”
Our customized training and learning development services are offered with every learning style in mind as a priority. We meet this need by providing a front-end analysis of the learning audience, company culture, etc. We are also able to accomplish this by offering customized surveys where we can get an understanding of the whole learner before creating a one size fits all lesson or eLearning. This intentional work sets us apart from our competitors.
Additionally, it has been our practice to use our platform and influence – especially in marketing material, curriculum content, and on our social media accounts in a way that calls out ways businesses should consider the learning needs of identity groups (I.E., LGBTQIA+, disabled people, and marginalized communities). We believe in creating material that shows scenarios within our lessons that portray an array of representations in characters (including diversifying gender expression and usage of pronouns) and diverse narration voices, etc. We consult with Human Resources training managers to ensure their education materials show gender inclusion; characters in scenarios utilize names representing diverse backgrounds, economic status, and levels of leadership. We believe that the more we normalize a conceptual curriculum that’s diverse – the more we create an educational environment where the learner can see themselves in the curriculum which promotes knowledge retention and workplace productivity.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My career comes from humble beginnings and a lot of taking roles not aligned with my career goals. As a first-generation college graduate within my immediate family, I navigated college and the workforce as best as I could – adopting mentors and coaches along the way. I am most proud that I achieved a graduate degree in Education Management and am now the CEO of my own education + training company. Some of the gems I learned along the way are to not compare myself to others or focus on the years it takes to accomplish milestones like degree completion, etc. The goal is to finish within the financial constraints and bandwidth based on your situation. As someone who has sought leadership roles as I progress, I have found great value in self-evaluation work and receiving feedback to assure I am aware of areas of opportunities for growth. This work will also show when you need to set time aside to create a work-life balance. Ironically, this self-evaluation work helps me make decisions about how I oversee staff conflict; the way I extend my grace; how I coach subordinates, and the ways I humanly connect to others in the work environment. I believe my leadership brand is grounded in wellness, and self-awareness, and shows up in the way I treat others. This intentional work is shown in how I position my business – Champion Instructors Education & Training, how I consult with clients, and in the final product of services I deliver.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
As a San Diego native, there are some must-sees. First, I love taking friends and loved ones to the La Jolla Shores for a nice patio meal overlooking the ocean. We also have to make our way to the beach and hopefully, make time to grab souvenirs and a mom-and-pop taco shop run. Lastly, the outlet at San Ysidro and a drink on Cornado Island is an absolute must!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
As a humanitarian – I found myself volunteering in areas of educational scholarship fundraising and youth programming within my membership of the Order of Eastern Star Prince Hall Affiliated. It was during this season after undergrad (over 20 years ago) that I decided to pursue education on a graduate level. Since then, I have joined two amazing organizations (Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and Jack and Jill of America) where I continue to promote educational development for learners as early as pre-school – K16 through adult learners in the workplace. All of these organizations believe in scholarship, community service, and affordable educational experiences for all no matter one’s economic disadvantages. I am confident that my advocacy is stemmed from the foundation my grandmother instilled in me at an early age where she too led community development programs as a seasoned Nurse Practitioner in the field of OBGYN. She made sure I valued education, volunteered within my community, and introduced me to faith and wellness work. All of these experiences feed into the work that I do and keep me grounded and thriving to be my best for my family and my community. I dedicate my work to my children and my grandmother’s legacy.