Wow. Yeah, so as you (all 2 of you…maybe) reading this can see, I absolutely suck at writing this blog when I am not in school. This is my stress relief, and when I reach this magical point at the end of the semester where I’m mostly done, I no longer need some sort of creative outlet.
I finished my first year of grad school – with a 4.0. I was commended for my hard work. I was assigned to an ungodly number of projects. I had plans to work my face off all Summer (despite knowing damn well that would never happen with all 5 kids in the house). I also had plans to take it easy my second year.
No one else in my department had those plans for me.
I was informed over the summer that I was changing offices. I would now be on another floor (with the anthropology department!) and I was worried. Was I a pariah? Did I anger my office-mates? Was I now the bastard child of my department? Thankfully, the answer was no. I later found out that I was actually being promoted to lab manager. I am now co-manager of the behavior lab and our big fancy physiology lab. That’s pretty awesome. I really like my co-manager, and we now share an office. It’s a nice office too. It has its own refrigerator, microwave, and toaster oven. I feel that the toaster oven is a bit overkill, but I’m not going to complain. I can have toasted something whenever the hell I want, and I can lord it over the plebeians from my ivory tower. Or not. I’m so not that kind of person.
My sweet new digs are really quite nice. I’m 3 floors higher, have a MUCH better view, and it is a lot quieter. Maybe I will get more work done this way.
I also received my TA (Teaching Assistant) assignment – I will be working with one of the big guys in the department (the same one from Spring). I’m pretty excited about that. I’ll be honest – I am in way over my head with this (or at least I feel like I am). Because we actually teach at my university, I am going to be teaching about the genetic basis for ideology. I’ve read several articles, studied it a bit, but I’m not certain in my material. I am basically praying for some sort of miracle – only I’m not actually religious so I’m not sure how that’s working out for me.
This semester I have 3 classes to take, a class to teach with 120 students, I’m a co-lab manager, I’m on 6 research projects, and I’m going to spend my semester working on my dissertation. Oh, and I have my own undergrad RA (Research Assistant) to train and supervise. What am I doing with my life?!?
But really – I am really excited for the many opportunities that have opened themselves up for me. I am thankful for such an amazing department. I hear about (and saw the fallout from) these horror stories from some departments, and I am so lucky that mine is a solid, congenial, positive department. I am so glad I chose to come to this random state that I had never ever considered living in before. I am glad that I chose the university, not based on ranking, but on who I wanted to work with and how I felt about the people. I am glad that I had such amazing mentors who prepared me for grad school (or at least prepared me the best that they could). I am honored to have the friends I have – those that support me and make going through grad school such an amazing experience.