What’s New: Looking Ahead in Pathways

by Diane Bair

As you envision what this new year may bring, consider taking time to create intentional, specific, and measurable goals toward what’s most important to you this year. What goals are you setting for 2022? 

By all means, don’t forget about Toastmasters. It may be time to complete your path that’s been a work in progress; tackle projects you’ve been putting off forever, or finally say yes to leadership opportunities at your club or district level. 

Whatever your ambitions, you’ll want to identify a plan to get you from point A to point B, with clear milestones and a way to measure progress. And what better roadmap than Pathways, with its digital content relevant for the times and today’s careers.

Regardless of where you are on your Pathways journey, you always want to stay abreast of educational changes that may affect you, as well as new or future members. After all, you can’t mentor a new member to achieve their goals if you don’t know the program yourself. Right? 

So here’s some news everyone will want to know!

Recent Pathways updates

All paths have now been updated with project changes to Levels 1 and 3. The updates will apply only to those who have made a Pathways purchase on or after October 27, 2021, and for English-only materials at this time. Here’s what’s new:

  • The newly revised Pathways Level 1 release includes an updated Ice Breaker project, the Evaluation, and Feedback project, and two (2) new projects―Writing a Speech with Purpose and also Introduction to Vocal Variety & Body Language. These two additions will help teach new members basic public speaking skills right away and set them up for success on their Toastmasters journey.
  • The Researching and Presenting project that was in Level 1 has been relocated to Level 3 as an elective. 
  • Note that any paths currently in progress, or already completed, will be unaffected.  Members will continue using the prior Level 1 and 3 projects without modification. Only newly purchased paths will reflect these changes.
  • On the Base Camp home page, you should know there’s now a new Suggested Learning box for Level 1 users. Scan to the bottom of your home page for a list of articles that complement topics relevant to Level 1. (These materials can also be accessed from the Tutorials and Resources page). And don’t forget to check out the Base Camp Video periodically to see the latest features.
  • Do you have a member unsure of which path to choose? Here’s a tip:

When a member starts a new path selection process, Base Camp will now recommend Presentation Mastery, if not previously selected. The suggestion appears during the path assessment and also when viewing the list of available paths. Despite the nudge, the member is still free to select any path they like.

Why Pathways?

As a result of a lot of trial and error, and feedback from members like you, Pathways has evolved—and will continue to evolve—into an effective educational program best suited to our tech-oriented world.

Within its 11 specialized paths and 300 unique competencies, Pathways gives us opportunities for new experiences and skills that will serve us in unquantifiable ways in the future—online workshops and panels, conflict resolution, interview skills, teambuilding, making proposals, blogging and podcasting, to name just a few. You’ll find a wealth of worthwhile elective projects to choose from in the higher project levels of Pathways. 

For those who worked in the old legacy program, you may be unaware how much Pathways has improved since it was first introduced several years ago. It’s definitely worth checking out again!

  • Flexibility and navigation is greatly improved. You can easily move within levels to work on any project you choose. This flexibility allows you to select topics that are meaningful to you now. For example, when taking advantage of new or spur-of-the-moment opportunities— like organizing an event, participating in a panel, managing an online meeting, mentoring or coaching— you’re able to get credit for them then and thereby locating and completing the relevant project from any level. Once you complete all of the projects within a level, you can then receive credit for that level.
  • Need help navigating Pathways in Base Camp? Ask your VPE or other experienced members for help, or better yet check out District 101’s Resource tab for Pathways. Here, at https://d101tm.org/pathways-2/, you’ll discover invaluable videos including an introduction to Pathways, navigation tips, and tricks, and working through a project or speech evaluation.
  • Want to quickly access your projects even when not online? Pathways allows you to download your projects and evaluation forms. In fact, many members like the efficiency of doing exactly that whenever beginning a new path or new level. After logging into Base Camp, you may download your individual projects from the Paths and Learning section. Or download evaluation forms from within each of your projects. In fact, you can find evaluations for any and all projects from the Speech Evaluations section in Base Camp.

The project PDF can serve as a quick reference manual, while the evaluation resource PDF reminds you of your goals and is easily forwarded to your Speech Evaluator. File these away in a folder on your computer to return to them later when deciding on your next speech. Create a speaking plan by selecting projects in the order that best suits you.  

  • Not sure where to begin? The Icebreaker Speech and Level 1 are always a good place to start. And while proceeding in order is a good way to go, you are no longer restricted to a linear model. The speech order you choose is entirely up to you. You get to decide.

As you set your personal goals for this next year, take advantage of everything Pathways has to offer to make you more successful. Decide on what you want to achieve, and by when. Then work your path in 2022!


Written by: Diane Bair DTM – District 101 Speakeasy Monterey Toastmasters CL#4547 & Peninsula Pros – CL#8275