Saturday, November 18, 2006

On Work in the Academy -- A Preface

After watching a couple inspiring episodes of The Wire (one of my fave shows ever) I was inspired to finally begin writing my long-proposed series of blog entries on working in the academy. This entry will serve as a preface in that it's not entirely about the academy but more about one of the things that lured me into academia -- teaching (the other is writing, but that entry will be much, much later).

Both my parents were trained as teachers. My mom did a two-year teaching certificate at U of Regina (then a subsidiary of U of Sask.), and my dad did a B.Ed. at the same place (geography and economics double major, stats minor -- and he did it in 3 full years).

I remember mom telling me that she didn't do a full degree because she didn't feel she could afford it, even with student loans -- she came from a pretty poor background. She worked outside of school every year she was in uni. Mom has always been a champion of my continuing student status, and it's affected me greatly ever since I was wee. In fact, she went back to university when my sis and I were kids, and she did so while working, which pretty effing impressive, in my books -- I can barely manage my own household, and I don't have kids or a full-time job in my field outside of school. My dad has always encouraged me to write, because he says being able to write naturally is a gift -- which it can be, but it's also a skill that those not so comfortable with writing can learn, and I hope I can help people with their writing skills through my career. I'm lucky, because not all perma-students have great support from their family, and that makes finishing the long journey towards the PhD even more difficult. I don't think my parents are supportive because they were teachers (both work in other fields now), but perhaps their teaching background makes them more understanding of my long-term goal -- to be a professor at a university.

Huh. Typing it out makes it sound so boring, but I can assure you that I didn't half-assedly decide to purse an academic career. I didn't just get into grad school and never get out. I only took one year off, but that year, combined with the previous MA year at Jackass Uni, solidified my desire to become an English prof. Oh, I guess I should also add that my (combined) years of being a piano teacher, a research assistant, a teaching assistant and an impromptu-sure-I'll-help-you-with-your-essay-tutor.... well, all those things helped too.

So now, here I am, a working member of the academy. Right now I'm a research assistant, a teaching assistant and a full-time PhD ABD student, and I'm going to write an entry on each of these jobs in the next couple weeks.

So check back soon.
doctor T 1:22 AM | 0 comments |

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Oooh! A Meme!

I stole this from ariberkana, aka the owner of what once was Thesis-Induced Rants and Rambling and is now Where Do I Go From Here?
It's supposed to be less wordy than most memes, but meh -- I'm a wordy person.

1. Yourself:
vivacious

2. Your boyfriend/girlfriend.....
Don't have one -- I'm married

3. Your hair?
short

4. Your mother?:
tanned (but not a sun worshiper)

5. Your Father:
sun worshiper (yet not tanned)

6. Your Favorite Item:
erm, water bottle?

7. Your dream last night:
Oddly enough, I don't remember

8. Your Favorite drink:
G&T -- fab, and I can only have two max. Perfect drink!

9. Your Dream Car:
Something small

10. The room you are in:
den

11. Your Ex:
Korea

12. Your fear:
illness

13. What you want to be in 10 years:
employed!

14. Who you hung out with last night?
the hubster

15. What You're Not?
thin

16. Muffins:
fresh

17: One of Your Wish List Items:
slip cover for the couch

18: Time:
pretty late

19. The Last Thing You Did:
surfed (the net)

20. What You Are Wearing:
pjs

21. Your Favorite Weather:
Mild, or really, really cold -- but only if I'm inside

22. Your Favorite Book:
Jane Eyre

23. The Last Thing You Ate:
chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy

24. Your Life:
pretty darn good

25. Your Mood:
done for the day

26. Your best friend (s):
loyal

27. What are you thinking about right now?
food

28. Your car:
Smokey

29. What are you doing at the moment?
This -- duh

30. Your summer:
solo travel, broken ankle

31. Your relationship status:
pretty darn good!

32. What is on your tv?
Stephen Colbert; a DVD player

33. What is the weather like?
Damp and dark

34. When is the last time you laughed?
a couple minutes ago

So, did y'all learn anything about me? Probably not, but I kinda did.
doctor T 11:37 PM | 0 comments |

Where Have I Been?

The short answer is:
I have several academic topics to blog/bitch about but they'll have to wait a few hours. I need some painkillers right now.
doctor T 1:35 PM | 1 comments |