14
Jan 17

Write More

Over the years, I have found that my students inspire me in many ways. This past fall semester, in the Marketing Capstone where we have students build their Professional Digital Identity, I was inspired by everyone — but one student’s approach to the assignment has been digging at me.

Ben challenged himself with “the More project” where he decided to do “more” of something and then write about it. As I watched him develop this and keep it going over the fall semester, I kept thinking to myself that as a professor who is pushing her students to create and build content, I’ve not been holding up my end of the bargain.

Ben Villnave

I’ve fallen into a state of non-writing. Going from one thing to the next, but not pausing to reflect, think, and explore. The very things I ask of my students.

So as we head into an uncertain political climate (although, truth be told, it’s getting more and more certain every day), face constant change in the discipline I teach, and I get ready to celebrate my half century birthday, it’s clear that it is time to WRITE MORE.

And so, I begin, with thanks to Ben and all my students. So much content to create..so little time!


28
Aug 15

Advice to the Class of 2019: OWN your Education

It’s that time of year again. It’s back to school! So many of my friends are posting first day of school pictures of their young ones heading on to the bus or off to the classroom. I remember those days but now that my daughter is in college, my “first day of school” is much different.

It really begins with convocation. Here at Champlain College we have convocation on the Friday before classes start. Friday morning is move in day, get settled in a bit, say goodbye to your parents, convocation, and then various and sundry other epic adventures, capped off with academic orientation on Saturday morning. Want details on it all? By all means take a look at the Champlain College Orientation 2015 schedule!

Over the years, I’ve found that listening to the President’s speech and watching as students and families say goodbye has been both heartwarming and nostalgic. Up until last year it was the picture of things to come…and now I remember watching my daughter go through it as well. I enjoy convocation where we have the opportunity to see our incoming first years (this year is the Class of 2019), salute an outstanding citizen and hear words of wisdom from the Lyman Professor. Last year, my colleague and friend Dr. Nancy Kerr even brought props!  You can read her speech on our website.

Dr. Nancy Kerr and Dr. Mike Kelly (holding the typewriter)

This year, however, is going to be a whole new experience for me. You see I’ll now be the one standing up on that stage dropping words of wisdom on the incoming class of 2019. I have been awarded the honor of being the Lyman Professor for this year which comes with it a few nice perks and the privilege of giving a speech at convocation.

As I’m sure you can imagine this is both an honor and actually something that is quite overwhelming. I’ve spent the summer noodling on this and what I wanted to impart upon the incoming class and finally, this weekend as I sat on a rock by my pond, it started to gel.

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And here it is. Already Friday. And I’m about to give that speech. According to my daughter it is pretty good…actually she said “That’s going to be amazing”. Here’s hoping so.

For those of you who are unable to attend the convocation in person, here’s what I ended up writing.

Wow. Look at all of you. The Class of 2019!

I just listened to the President’s speech over at Akin Lawn and watched as you headed off in your groups and left your family members. You’ve mostly moved into your dorms if you live on campus, and for those of you living off campus, you’ve probably gotten the lay of the land at this point. Most of you are now, officially, “on your own”. Perhaps for the first time.

How does it feel?

How many of you are excited? … thrilled? … nervous? …. anxious? ….hungry?

Last year at Convocation my colleague and friend Dr. Nancy Kerr encouraged students to take out their cellphones and take a selfie, or a picture of the crowd and document this moment. I’m going to continue that tradition and encourage you all to take a minute and go for it. Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook…just use the hashtag #champ2019. Go ahead. I’ll take my own and wait for you.

Oh and if you want to, go ahead and Meerkat or Periscope this speech, or live Tweet it. I can’t speak for my platform partners up here, but while I’m speaking go right ahead. I’ll trust that you aren’t going to just text random stuff to your friends. Naturally, texting what I have to say is ok, though.

So here we are. Getting ready to embark on a grand adventure together. Each of you filled with a variety of emotions — emotions that I feel too. I’ve watched this process of first years entering Champlain for almost 15 years and I’ve even watched my own daughter go through the process too. As a professor and a parent this time of transition is filled with all sorts of awesome. Really. There’s pride, wonder, nostalgia, worry, and even relief. As I thought about what I’d say today, and all the “advice” I wanted to drop, I realized that everything I had to say could be boiled down into one very distinct and specific message.

This education thing you’re doing? The next four years of your life? It’s yours. Let me say that again. It’s YOURS.  It belongs to you. This is no longer high school where you go through the motions because everyone tells you to. This is college. This is expensive. But no matter who is paying for it, or how you are making this work in your life, remember that this education belongs to you. So own it. If you love what you are doing, then stick to it. If you don’t then switch your major. Don’t let your families, your friends, even your professors have so much influence on you that you don’t pursue your education to its fullest. The next four years are so full of learning that you cannot be passive about it. Face each day with a sense of purpose because you never know what the day will bring and what you will learn from it. Yep. This is YOUR education.

I’ve had the privilege of getting to know many students during my time at Champlain. And I’ve watched all of them come in as first years and over the four years (sometimes five) that they have been here, I have watched every single one grow, change, and become young professionals who were ready to take on the world when they graduated. Trust me when I say to you that the person you are today, sitting here at Convocation, is NOT the person you will be in four years when you graduate from Champlain College.

The emotions you are feeling today are there because you know deep down inside that you are getting ready to embark on an adventure that will expand your mind, change your point of view, increase your knowledge, and make you a different person. I’m here to tell you that it is one of the most awesome experiences you can have. Look forward to it. Be excited and above all be open to all that is coming.

We live in times of great change. Every day we are reading news about challenges our country is facing. We are entering an election cycle and you all will have the opportunity to vote in your first presidential election. You are on a college campus where you can learn about other’s points of view. You can get involved and engage with clubs, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, the Student Government Association, Sustain Champlain — heck you can learn how to raise bees and sell honey! You can practice civic action and get involved with our Center for Service and Civic Engagement. As a student here you can exercise your voice and if you are unhappy with something this college is doing, you can band together and change it. Here is where you begin to learn that you not only have a voice, but you can use that voice to have a positive impact on those around you.

Every single moment you are at Champlain College is a learning opportunity. A step towards your future you. Think about it. Every single moment. Even right now.

In and out of the classroom you can take steps to your future you. And here are some things that will get you there:

Help each other. Right now, turn to the people around you and smile. A smile is the first step to friendships. Go beyond your dorm and your major. Some of the most powerful and long lasting friendships I’ve seen students make have come from being open to accepting others into their lives.

Take advantage of every opportunity. Be curious and open minded. Take on internships and work-based experiences. Say yes to study abroad. Get involved. Start a club. Challenge your stereotypes. Push your boundaries. Each time you do, you’ll be rewarded.

Use your resources. You’ve by now heard all about our “human touch”. (You just heard it from Pres. Laackman when he talked about Mind, Heart and Body.) Well it’s not just marketing (and I know marketing). Professors and staff actually do care. You aren’t alone here. Really. When you have questions, when you are uncertain, when you don’t know what action to take, even if you don’t know what question to ask…reach out to one of us. We will help you.

Remember that College is HARD. Change is HARD. Learning is HARD. So be kind to yourself. Eat well, get enough sleep. When you are feeling stressed, you are not alone. Your peers are stressed too…whether it is class work, personal life stuff, missing your family and friends, feeling overwhelmed…know that you are not the only person feeling this way and remember what I said earlier about using your resources. Don’t hide. Talk it out. You WILL be ok! 

Do NOT be afraid to FAIL. College is where you learn. When you FAIL remember that it is just your First Attempt In Learning. Entrepreneurs talk time and time again about the amount of failure they had before they succeeded. Now is the time to fail so you can learn and be ready when you enter the professional world. Don’t let failure stop you. EVERYONE fails. You belong here. Take it in stride. Learn from it. Grow.

Finally, relax. Chill Out. Enjoy the experience. Remember that there really is nothing so bad that it cannot be worked out. 

And above all, resolve to

Be.

Awesome.

Every.

Single.

Day.

Because you are awesome and you are here at Champlain College where we know you will flourish as you embark on one of the most amazing journeys of your life.


15
May 13

Oh the places we will go! But we can’t do it without YOU!

happy lolcat

I love this time of year. And yes, in good part because it is summer. But also because we have wrapped up another academic year, a group of students has graduated and are making their way in this world, and we now spend time looking back, reflecting on what went well, and what we can do better looking forward.

As an institution of higher learning, Champlain College has been described as agile, nimble, forward thinking, and innovative. For a small, private college in one of the most rural states in the nation, we are the little college that could. We have literally come a long way, from humble beginnings in 1878 as “Burlington Collegiate Institute”  housed at one time above what is now Nectars, to our current home in the hill section of Burlington.  We’ve gone from offering Associate’s Degrees in fields such as Secretarial Science to Fashion Merchandising and Court Reporting to now having numerous Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees (both traditional and online)  in fields ranging from Marketing (my personal favorite of course) to Game Development, Early Childhood Education, Digital Forensics and Environmental Policy. We have campuses in Dublin and Montreal. We are ranked in Princeton Review’s 377 Best Colleges and in US News and World Report’s Best Comprehensive Colleges in the North. Read more about our awesome history and our even more awesome NOW on our “history” page over at our website.

But what has any of this to do with reflection and thinking about where we go from here?

Everything actually.

While I was on sabbatical Champlain College really started to grow up.  You see, while in our history we had been given gifts to support our physical growth (think buildings such as The Miller Information Commons and the S.D. Ireland Global Business and Technology Center) we haven’t really had the type of contributions to academics that more traditional four year colleges and universities have. Champlain College is a tuition-driven institution which means we don’t have large endowments, or specialized “faculty chairs”.  October 2012 changed all that. We received the biggest gift in our 135 year history: $10 million from the Robert Stiller Family Foundation.

Wow. Look at us. Getting all grown up.

This gift resulted in Champlain getting its first “named” school: The Robert P. Stiller School of Business (of which I am a proud faculty!). Over the next five years we will also be able to add additional faculty, and we’ll be adding an emphasis to our school on Positive Organizational Development (based on the Appreciative Inquiry framework).

Part of the gift also included a challenge: The 2K 4 2M Challenge. A matching gift that if we can raise funds from 2,000 alumni we’ll get an additional $2 million to put towards our “Vision, Innovation, Passion” campaign. Naturally the idea here is that to have a truly successful educational institution we need to engage and gain support from alumni like never before; that our alumni are critical to our success, just as we have been a major part of their success.

Donate to our 2k42m Campaign

We need 380 more alumni to donate any amount (even $1 counts!) to get us to 2,000 alumni.

Naturally there’s a catch. We have to get the 2,000 donations by June 30th. But I’m sure you are up for it.

So no matter WHEN you went to Champlain. Take a few minutes and reflect back on your experience with us. Think about what you learned, where it took you, the people you met, how your life, your perspective, your world changed while you were here. Then think forward. Where will you help us go now? Your gift will help us expand our campus and continue to make a difference in the lives of young people. It will help the new Stiller School of Business do more to fulfill our mission of “…changing the world through business” and it will help Champlain College continue to thrive and grow as a leader for education and an economic driver for Burlington and for Vermont.

It’s easy to make a gift. Just head on over to our online support form, fill it out,  input your credit card info and become part of history at Champlain by being the biggest group of alumni to ever donate to the college.

Still not sure?

How about you watch these videos and see just how far we’ve come. Now imagine what videos we’ll be able to post five years from now because of your gift!

You Make It Happen | Champlain College from Champlain College on Vimeo.

Champlain Rules from Champlain College on Vimeo.

You can also help by spreading the word and sharing this post, or the link to our “official 2K42M” page where people can read more about it and check out messages from alumni who have given as well as noted colleagues Jim Ellefeson, Cinse Bonino, and Nancy Kerr.

Now, between you and me, there is also a letter from the Accounting faculty. You see, we have a little competition going on (well, specifically Thane Butt and I have a little competition going on). She believes that more Accounting alumni will donate than Marketing alumni. Frankly, I just can’t imagine that, because, as we all know MARKETING IS AWESOME! So here’s a special call to all Champlain Alumni who graduated from our Marketing program. You know what to do.

Click HERE.

Let’s beat Accounting!

lolcat73

 


23
Jan 13

A joyful re-entry isn’t that hard…really!

I’m stunned. Seriously. It seems like just a few hours ago that I left campus for my sabbatical, and here it is already the third week of classes in the Spring 2013 semester. I’ve been officially back to work now for three weeks. And I’m already sick, and have already had to miss one of my classes (thankfully, didn’t need to cancel it since my partner in crime, Professor Kelly Thomas was fit and healthy!).

sicklolcat Put me back into the petri dish that is a college campus at the beginning of the semester and no matter how much antioxidant foods, and antibacterial soaps I utilize, it is no match.  For those of you who teach, you know what I mean.  That third week pandemic that hits every semester. It’s shear luck to beat it.  Clearly my luck in this case did not hold.

You’d think I’d be upset about it.

But I’m not.

Really.

I’ve been away for months. I’ve had the summer and fall of a lifetime enjoying this amazing privilege called “sabbatical”. I’ve rested. I’ve relaxed. I’ve re-energized.  I’ve done amazing things, like level my blood elf, Lisaralisa, to an 88, overcome my fear of riding motorcycles, continue on a journey of health and wellness and I’ve slept… a lot. Oh, and I’ve been writing a book too! But something in all of that has been missing.  As wonderful as it has all been (and it’s been wonderful!), there was something that I have come to realize about my absence that has moved my re-entry from being onerous and difficult to a time of joy.

I’ll start by saying that it was clear to everyone, even myself, that I was burned out, exhausted and needed a break. Life as an administrator was very difficult and even my spring semester last year, when I no longer had the administrative responsibilities was still very difficult. I am the first to admit I was not a pleasant person to be around, and certainly not a good model for my students.  I even questioned if I should continue being a teacher. I’ve been doing this for thirteen years.  I didn’t feel I could reach the students any longer.  I walked into my sabbatical unsure, unclear, exhausted, and burned out.

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Thanks to several former students (you know who you are), I pretty quickly came to realize that I love teaching and I love being in the classroom with students who are learning, growing, and teaching me new things every day.

This became even more clear to me as I walked back onto campus this January. My first day back, I started meeting with students. My first office hours were jammed packed. My classes have been fun, engaging, and super interesting. Quite joyful actually.After just a few short weeks into my sabbatical I was able to notice that the one thing I missed was the interaction I had with students.

It’s all about the students.

The reason why I became a professor in the first place was to teach. I felt that my background and interests would translate well into the classroom and that I could bring a lot to students. Over the years I’ve had good classes and bad classes. I’ve had great relationships with students and I’ve had very bad situations happen. It’s been an amazing ride and my sabbatical has provided me with a real gift.  A gift to come away, see things clearly, and remember why I decided to become a teacher in the first place.

My father was a teacher. I remember as a child watching him help high school students learn, and I remember him trying to teach me math (algebra was when we realized I make a really good writer). He was patient, kind, and met students where they were.  I’ve always respected his ability to calmly and thoughtfully reframe answers over and over helping his students make mental connections that allowed them to learn.  When I became a teacher I think he was proud of me.  We talked about it once recently while he was in the nursing home and he told me stories of his teaching and how he was able to connect with and reach his students in meaningful ways.  I talked about my work and I remember how engaged he got as I told him about issues with students. He would give me advice and we realized that we had some common ground, which is nice to remember.  My Dad passed away on Monday, December 3. This Thursday would have been his 77th birthday.  I think about this connection we shared as I walk into my classrooms now after sabbatical and after saying goodbye to this wonderful teacher and I am filled with gratitude.

And that, my friends, is why my re-entry is joyful.


28
Sep 12

Thank you Mr. Cannon for inspiring my daughter…and for inspiring me

On Monday morning I received a text message from my daughter.

She asked me if I could take her to lunch that day.  I fired off a list of things I had to do as I was walking on the treadmill (don’t do this at home, it’s very dangerous to text and treadmill at the same time).  Honestly, what was she thinking, asking me something silly like that.

And then I got her response.

Mr. Cannon died.

Just like that. Everything stopped.

Mr. Cannon died.

George Cannon, South Burlington High School Teacher via the Burlington Free Press

Photo via the Burlington Free Press. George Cannon teaching Chemistry class.

And just like that everything changed.

Several days have now passed. I won’t bore you with the details of the process we’ve gone through here in my household except to say that it’s been a time of sadness, tears, avoidance, reflection, laughter, stories, and unease.

My heart goes out to Mr. Cannon’s family and close friends and to his students. Based on the memorial group in Facebook, it is clear that he touched so many lives in a positive way, it is almost unbelievable.

But I believe it.

I’ve seen what he has done for my daughter in just a few short weeks. She went into her chemistry class with a sense of uncertainty, and some curiosity…and came out after the first day ecstatic.  I began to hear stories of burp charts, juggling, chemistry experiments, and saw her come alive as she talked about her favorite class and what a great day she had.

As an educator myself reading the comments from students (even some of my students) who had him at South Burlington has been a learning opportunity. Taking a break from my teaching on sabbatical has allowed me to rest, refresh and begin to think about my teaching approach. I never thought that a man I never met would leave me with inspiration to dig even deeper to explore how I might do things differently. Change my approach. Rethink my process.

And yet, he has.

There is much to say about a man who can touch lives of people he hasn’t even met.

I’m grateful today for the internet. No. Really.  It is because of YouTube, and several video interviews that George Cannon participated in that I can be even further inspired and challenged in my work.

On Classroom Climate:

On Advice to Educators:

As the SB Community comes together to mourn and then celebrate the life of this amazing man (here’s a link to the obit) I’m left with a sense of loss of never having had the chance to know this man personally, and yet also a sense of optimism as I reflect on his advice that has been left for educators all over to consider:

The biggest impediment to optimal student learning is the limitation of their teacher.

Anything that comes out of a student’s mouth, in my mind, is the beginning of correctness.

So thank you Mr. Cannon.  Thank you for what you have done for my daughter. For your kind words last week when she turned on the showers, and they wouldn’t stop, and you thanked her for creating a wonderful and memorable learning opportunity for the class as you raced around sopping up the water that was leaking everywhere.

Thank you for inspiring me to be an even better teacher.


27
Aug 12

Advice to new college students and their parents: Have fun, learn new things, give and get stickers

I’m on sabbatical. This of course, is a very good thing for me as I’ve been working for 12+ years in higher ed with no break — teaching, running programs, building curriculum and being an Assistant Dean.  It’s a little secret that we faculty suffer from burn out. Well, maybe it isn’t that big of a secret really, but in my case, I knew I was running on fumes, but it wasn’t until the end of the spring semester when I realized, in a very hard and personal way,  just how bad it was. I had a group of individuals let me know, very clearly and quite bluntly just how they felt about the work that I do. They took their opportunity to let me know in no uncertain terms that maybe I should rethink my chosen profession. It hurt. I cried. I felt perhaps they were right. And then I had this summer. And now I have the fall.

To that group of students I want to say thank you.  While I wish you had come to me personally because I thought I had formed close relationships with you over four years, and I wish you had had the courage to tell me to my face you were unhappy, thought I was pushing you too hard, thought I wasn’t listening to you, I understand.  The upside is you’ve given me a great deal to think about. The downside is because you all chose to be anonymous and not come talk to me, I didn’t know you were unhappy until it was too late.

So in honor of  that class and the valuable lesson they have taught me, as we begin a new school year, I would like to take a few moments to provide you, first time college students, and your parents with some words of advice that you might not get any where else.

First to parents:

This is your child’s “first year”. They are first year students. They are away from home for the first time. Everything is once again a first. Please take some time to consider the following points:

  1. It’s time to let go. Your work is done. Really. Now it is time for your child to stand on their own two feet, make their mistakes, learn, grow and have experiences that will continue to shape them into the adults they are becoming.
  2. Sit tight and wait for the 5th week slump. Be ready for it. Arm yourself. Encourage your child to seek out help. To talk to their professors. To go to the counseling center. To use their resources. But unless we are talking an extreme circumstance, don’t bail them out. Trust me on this. They will be stronger for it.
  3. Please. Please. Please. If your child has a medical condition, a learning issue, or any type of issue that will effect how they act in the classroom, make sure they talk to their professors about it (see my advice to students below).
  4. Care packages with stickers are always a win.
  5. Unfriend your child on Facebook. Really. Now is the time to let them share with you what they want to share with you, but you don’t want to see everything. There are some thing that parents just shouldn’t know. Think about when you were their age, and what you didn’t share with your parents.
  6. Do get your child’s class schedule so you know when NOT to text them — for example during a class.  Professors really don’t like that.
  7. Don’t try to get your child an internship or a job and please don’t set up their schedule for them. They can do this…and they have resource on campus to help them.
  8. If your child gets a bad grade it is what they earned. I’m sure your child is awesome. But, don’t call the professor to argue about the grade your child received. As a matter of fact, don’t ever call the professor. Encourage your child to talk to the professor.  I provided some advice on this last January in a US News article.
  9. Be ready for reality. Maybe your child isn’t really ready for college. It’s ok. Don’t push them to be here if they aren’t ready. When they come home to visit after midterm and their grades are bad, don’t be angry, but be ready to have the conversation about what they really want. The first semester is overwhelming and homework often isn’t the priority.  Many can turn it around the next semester. For those who can’t it might be time to rethink the college plan.
  10. Celebrate the fact that your child is in college and away from home. Have fun with that. Focus on your other children, or on yourself. It’s a good time of life.

And now for you first year students:

Yep. Feel that energy? That excitement? You are FREE! So much to experience and so much responsibility all at once. Everything is new. New friends. New experiences. Oh…and yeah…there’s that academic thing. Those classes.

Your priorities are well…let’s be honest, not the same priorities that I, as a professor, set for the classroom.

So here’s my tips for you:

  1. Yep have fun. Experience everything you can…but please be safe. College is awesome, but just like high school, it is not the end all and be all of your life. Trust me on this. There is so much more awesome to come.  This is the start of it. Do it right, be safe, live to tell the tales of all the epic you had in college.
  2. Get to know your professors. We don’t have to be your friends (although that can happen), but it is better to come talk to us during office hours, or when we are in the cafeteria. Get to know us as individuals and not scary, judgey, stodgy, old people who find you annoying. Honestly we really don’t find you annoying. Most of us teach because we like to be in the classroom — and we like to teach you and watch you develop into kick ass adults.
  3. If you have a medical issue (say like you are on meds to help with ADHD for example) tell the professor. Get yourself to student services for the accommodation form. Seriously. Now is NOT the time to think you can go off your meds or change your support system now that you are out of high school. I cannot tell you how many students I’ve watched flame out because they thought that now they were out of high school, they could go off their meds. First year is TOUGH. Don’t make it harder.
  4. Don’t let your parents help you. Ask for their advice, certainly. Talk to them, of course. But, when you aren’t sure what to do for signing up for classes or in a class or how to cope, use your resources on campus to help you. Yes, it’s scary. Yes, it’s hard. But trust me on this one, you’ll find that your professors care and will help you. Your RA’s care and will help you. Asking your parents to help you do it will not help you in the long run.
  5. If you are not happy in a class — if you feel that you aren’t learning anything you have some choices.  You can whine and complain to your friends. You can whine and complain to your parents. Neither of which will get you much (although parents might call, which is expressly against #4 above). Or, you could meet with your professor. You could ask for help, explain that you are not understanding, or that you would like more interactivity, or that you need more clear direction. What’s the worst thing that could happen? The professor says no. Then you have some more choices, such as drop the class, or go talk to the Dean. In other words, now is the time to learn how to advocate for yourself. Complaining to no one in particular gets you nowhere — practice advocating for yourself in a positive way and you’ll be able to do it once you are in the workforce.
  6. If you are not happy in a class you can always express your opinion in the class evaluations. See my intro above to the downside of this method.  Upside is you express your point of view which can often impact the performance evaluation of a faculty person. The downside is it doesn’t help you get what you need (see #5 above).
  7. Ask your parents to send you care packages. That’s what they should do to help you. Stickers are awesome. Ask for stickers.
  8. Join stuff. Get involved. Clubs, events, outings. Do it all.
  9. Plan ahead. For study abroad. Whatever it takes. No matter how scary it is. Study abroad. Start planning now, in your first year. Talk to your professors about this. Get internships in the areas that are interesting to you. If your college doesn’t have an internship program, go out and do it anyway. Start thinking about this your first year. Take action in your sophomore year. Then do it again in your junior year and again in your senior year. It will make your classes so much more meaningful. Your professors can help with this too.
  10. Stay humble. You are learning a great deal. But this doesn’t mean you know everything. These days we are all life long learners. When you walk into a classroom, don’t judge your professor by their age or by their looks — you don’t like it when we judge you that way. Be open to learning always and remember you will NEVER know it all. As a professor I only know the stuff I know. There’s tons I don’t know, and I learn from my students every day.

So parents and students of the class of 2016 (for those of you on the four year plan) I wish you luck during this time of transition. It’s a wonderful time. It’s a scary time. Opportunity is in the air. Seize it each and every day, because before you know it, graduation will be here and you will be remembering your first year experience with nostalgia.


06
Feb 10

One foot in one world, one foot in another world

It’s official.

I have begun the new phase of my professional career and in celebration I am saying goodbye to my old blog and launching my new and improved WordPress, Headway Themed site.  I’ll be updating the functionality as I go, but am excited to take this next step.

Up until January 11th, my career path was fairly clear — full time associate professor. I had already done the admin thing for quite a few years for the Marketing program and had made a decision to stop that and focus on my teaching about two years ago. I never really thought I would go back into an administrative role.  But let that be a lesson to you all, you never really know where you are going to end up!

I accepted a two-year appointment as Assistant Dean of the Division of Business just as the Spring 2010 semester began.  In just a short time, I have found myself trying to figure out how to straddle the line between faculty (I’m still teaching three courses, which you can find out more about on Twitter searching for hashtags #mkt250, #mkt340 and #mkt420) and suddenly becoming part of the “Dean’s Office” in the Division.

And of course there’s that other role I have: Mom.

Juggling and balancing these different worlds will certainly be a challenge, but I would be lieing if I didn’t admit to the fact that the challenge is energizing. Being able to be in a position where I can help make a positive impact on students and faculty and curriculum is very cool. Still being in the classroom will keep me up-to-date and the students will continue to keep me on my toes.  And my daughter, well, she will make sure I don’t lose site of what is really important in all of it.

What comes next on this blog?

Well, just like my old one — whatever comes to mind that focuses on teaching, learning, curiosity, marketing, having fun, playing, and keeping balanced.  It’s all a great big sandbox anyway, so I’m going to keep on creating and knocking it down and doing it all over again.