Archive for September 22nd, 2009

I asked for it.

While shadowing a liberal arts professor as a graduate student, I attended a faculty meeting.  I don’t mean a departmental faculty meeting, I mean a meeting of the entire faculty.  At the time, the fact that these professors had a direct say in the organization of their school had a big impact on me.  Sure, faculty at big schools have a say in how their schools are run, but they don’t typically have this kind of direct influence.  This experience was one of the things that I talked about in interviews while on the job market, including the school at which I am now employed.

Now I’ve experienced a faculty meeting at my new institution and I don’t think I’d mind an indirect influence after all.  It doesn’t help that the first meeting of the semester dealt with proposed curriculum changes that a number of departments were not happy with.  Hopefully, this made the meeting more contentious than it would have otherwise been.

If there is a bright side to this experience (aside from having a direct say in the decisions that will affect my future) it is that the contentious nature of the meeting made some of the school’s stronger personalities evident, which will be helpful in future interactions.  On a small campus, it is hard to avoid these people even if they are in different departments.

I asked for it.

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