The Life of a Wannabe Academic

Detail of the life a new academic. The progress from graduate training to professor. Includes reflections on the job hunting process, research in technology and education, and what it is like to be a new college professor.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Remember what is was like?

I was thinking the other day that it is so easy to forget what it was like to be new in a place. For many of us, we might start a new job, start at a new school, or move to a new city several times in our lives. But once we have been somewhere for a while we take for granted what we did not know and how apprehensive or even scared we might have felt.

I had been in Grand Forks for 5 years before moving here just this past week. I vaguely remember the whirlwind of starting grad school, but after 2-3 years, I just took for granted what I knew and often wondered why the new grad students seemed so busy all of the time.

I am back to being new somewhere and I think I have a bit of a new perspective. This year, not only am I new to this school, but several of the students that I will be teaching and in contact with will be new to this school. I think faculty will sometimes assume that students know things that they have known because they have been here for a while. I know that I did that as a grad student. I plan to be more direct in letting students know what is out there for them to use (tutors, services, activities, etc).

Just going through this week of meetings and information reminded me of how much there is to learn about an institution that you are new to. But at least I am familiar with how college and universities generally do business....imagine what the first year student must be going through!


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