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Author Topic: 2012 Tenure Track Cohort  (Read 184992 times)
kangaroo
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« Reply #540 on: November 13, 2012, 10:51:02 AM »

I'm calm...I expect it's the cold medicine or resignation that D is for diploma, er, not being fired my first year.

Other than that, I'm just counting the hours until Thanksgiving Day break starts at 2 on Friday.

You get a week off! I am jealous.

(I have a one-day week next week because I don't teach on Tuesdays.)
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larix
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« Reply #541 on: November 13, 2012, 6:19:09 PM »

1) Healthy eating, exercise, and sleep habits?
Doing well on the healthy eating except for the odd lapse for a frozen pizza when I don't feel like cooking, I've finally gotten a more or less regular gym schedule going but my sleep habits are bad I stay up late and get up early.

2) Time for family, friends, and hobbies?
I get an F on this one. I do phone my SO every night but she lives in another country and is several time zones from me. I haven't really made any new friends here and haven't had time for hobbies (unless lab work counts).

3) Professional development activities including looking ahead to deadlines for spring and summer? 
Yes am presently working on two conference presentations and set up a meeting with some local industry types.

4) Ready mantra of "I don't care more about students than they do" as students who have done diddly all term are coming out of the woodwork to find out how to avoid the consequences?
Just got a flood of extra credit assignments turned in. The deadline for handing those in is fast approaching.

5) Ample supply of patience for those students who did have rough lives, but should try again another time when life doesn't conflict so heavily with class?
I take medication for this one it comes in liquid form and sits in a nice glass on the end table while I am grading. To be honest my students have been pretty good for the most part there are only a handful that I need patience for. 
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aysecik
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« Reply #542 on: November 13, 2012, 8:17:49 PM »

Ugh - I hope you feel better soon! Colds are horrible! One tip (endorsed by my very skeptical husband): Sage tea, if you can find it, works wonders for congestion. Also, if you are taking a decongestant, make sure to get the pseudoephedrine (behind the counter but non-prescription) - the other works for a couple days but makes everything worse after that. Take care!
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polly_mer
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Have you worked on that project today?


« Reply #543 on: November 14, 2012, 9:05:49 AM »

I'm calm...I expect it's the cold medicine or resignation that D is for diploma, er, not being fired my first year.

Other than that, I'm just counting the hours until Thanksgiving Day break starts at 2 on Friday.

You get a week off! I am jealous.

Don't be too jealous because it's setting the students up for failure.  Most of the students officially have a 10-day break.  Many of them will extend it to a 14-day break on both ends.  We only have two weeks before finals after we return so an extended break is horrible from a pedagogical viewpoint.  Many of the students have taken 4-day weekends all term, so those finals will be a disaster.  However, yes, I'm looking forward to a break that's long enough that I can both get caught up a bit, get ahead a bit, and still have time to hang out with the family.
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squirrelygirl
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« Reply #544 on: November 16, 2012, 2:18:02 AM »

Thinking about taking advantage of tuition remission to take a yoga class in the spring... I need the sense of peace again.
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sockknitter
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« Reply #545 on: November 16, 2012, 11:15:10 PM »

The numerous disasters at Clusterf*ck U continue.  My mentor has encouraged me to go on the market, and although I feel a little guilty for the students when I consider the possibility of moving on, I agree that it is probably a good idea.

Please take this with a grain of salt, because I have loaded up on liquid courage/medication!

1. Perpetually sleep-deprived, and when I wake each morning I feel like Bill Murray in Groundhog Day;

2. I lost my Significant Other by taking this job, but at least I have a sympathetic ear in my cohort, who is equally miserable;

3. Working my butt off, both for my own satisfaction and to satisfy hiring committees at other institutions;

4. Doing what I need to, and nothing more;

5. My institution seems to specialize in 13th grade, so I am becoming quite adept at handling such students.  I wish more of them were interested in the material and attended class regularly, but I also wish that I won the lottery and could leave this place asap.

Please pardon my snarkiness.
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heywhynots
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« Reply #546 on: November 20, 2012, 9:03:23 PM »

Untenured but a few years in on the track.  New colleague is 2012 cohort.  I fought to make sure colleague had an easier load than I did (two course reductions over the academic year vs. none for me).  This semester the load is one new lecture prep and then a lab section prepped by lab instructors.  Colleague is working like crazy for the one lecture prep and doing extra for the lab section.  The extra for lab is not helping the students learn better.  The extra work for lecture is working entire problem sets with students every week instead of having them try things on their own and come with specific questions.  Colleague is exhausted, failing asleep in seminars.  Others including students have commented on it.  Colleague is very defensive.  For the spring, the load will be a repeat of the lecture prep from this semester and a new lecture prep.  Already said person is talking about major changes (flipping the classroom) to the repeat along with preparing for the new prep.  Colleague is also talking about writing up results for previous work, writing a review, and getting a small grant prepared.  Two of those were supposed to be finished this semester but got gobbled up by the teaching. 

How would you suggest talking to my colleague?  I am all for improving a class but not at the expense of being well rested. 
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polly_mer
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Have you worked on that project today?


« Reply #547 on: November 21, 2012, 10:29:22 AM »

How would you suggest talking to my colleague?  I am all for improving a class but not at the expense of being well rested. 

Are you someone who is currently acting as unofficial coach or mentor for this colleague? 

If yes, then drop by the colleague's office and use some coaching skills. Decide if the person would respond well to brusque (you're failing at teaching and you aren't getting anything else done.  People are starting to talk, so here are my five best tips on improving), helpful but still pushy (so, you're still new and I notice you struggling.  Would you like some tips on how to game the system and accomplish more things with less struggle?), or sneaky (Would you help me kick around some ideas about how to reduce my lecture and lab prep while still maintaining high standards?  Thinking alone in my office isn't as good as having someone as a discussion partner.  <then steer the conversation and ask leading questions when the colleague shows any response to your good ideas>).

If no, then figure out who is this person's mentor or coach and go have a quiet word with that coach/mentor.  If the colleague is lacking a coach/mentor, then maneuver yourself into position to become one if that's reasonable (e.g., you have been collegial, but never interacted a lot; this won't happen if for some reason you are already on the road to being enemies).

In short, unless you are already having regular interactions as a mentor or are willing to do the work to become a mentor, you may have to STFU because few people take well to having someone just walk up out of the blue and say, "Look.  You're failing and I'm going to tell you what to do to fix it".
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I've joined a bizarre cult called JordanCanonicalForm's Witnesses.  I have to go from door to door asking people things like, "Good evening, sir!  Do you have a moment to chat about Linear Transformations?"
usukprof
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« Reply #548 on: November 22, 2012, 1:26:56 AM »

How would you suggest talking to my colleague?  I am all for improving a class but not at the expense of being well rested. 
If no, then figure out who is this person's mentor or coach and go have a quiet word with that coach/mentor.  If the colleague is lacking a coach/mentor, then maneuver yourself into position to become one if that's reasonable (e.g., you have been collegial, but never interacted a lot; this won't happen if for some reason you are already on the road to being enemies).

Everyone on TT should have a tenured mentor (including heywhynots), who is serious about the job, and respected by the rest of the faculty.  Heywhynots, do you have a mentor of your own to discuss this with?  Unless you are in a fractured department, your mentor can talk to your colleagues mentor to hopefully make things better.

How is it you have control over your colleagues load?
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Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life, son.  --Dean Vernon Wormer
heywhynots
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« Reply #549 on: November 23, 2012, 9:14:47 AM »

No official mentors here. There is a faculty mentor group but all of them are outside the sciences. Tenured members in the department tend to not want to say anything because they are afraid how it will come across as a demand rather than a suggestion plus that hate conflict.   I think that is silly but the reality of my department.  I am de facto my colleague's mentor despite being here for two years.  Despite all my other colleagues being tenured, I am the face of the department to the rest of the campus and end up doing things like scheduling because our chair can't.
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polly_mer
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Have you worked on that project today?


« Reply #550 on: November 24, 2012, 11:15:10 AM »

Everyone on TT should have a tenured mentor (including heywhynots), who is serious about the job, and respected by the rest of the faculty.

Should and do are different things.  For example, my official mentor is not tenured and so far her mentoring has consisted of one official lunch at the orientation session and one email before Thanksgiving.

However, my unofficial mentor who happens to be across the hall has saved my bacon so much that I have no clue what I would have done without her this first term.  She's getting a very nice Christmas present because that's the very least I can do for her.
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I've joined a bizarre cult called JordanCanonicalForm's Witnesses.  I have to go from door to door asking people things like, "Good evening, sir!  Do you have a moment to chat about Linear Transformations?"
aysecik
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« Reply #551 on: November 26, 2012, 8:49:47 PM »

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving! It was nice to sort of disconnect for a bit, but I am back to work.

So in my department, the graduate students talk with faculty through the fall semester, make 1st, 2nd etc. choices for thesis advisors, and based on that and the interest of the faculty (and availability of funding), they are matched with faculty. It is a small department and we have few grad students start each year. As a new faculty, I REALLY need a student so there is, you know, data (I am at an R1 in sciences). It was a bit tough, given this year's crop of students had applied and were selected in my absence obviously. Still, I was excited because one student was interested. Even though her background wasn't a great match, I am sure she would figure things out. I met with her twice, and she told me that she will list me as her first choice. Given the situation, it would imply it was all set - and she was even acting as if she was already starting. We even shook hands! And today I got an e-mail saying she met with other faculty and decided to "reorder" her choices. So I am worried I'll be with no grad students for over a year in this case.

If that's the case, what do I do? Go in the lab and run the experiments myself? And such a waste of time!

Sorry about the freak-out - but anyone have any experience with something like this?
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aysecik
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« Reply #552 on: December 08, 2012, 6:21:06 PM »

How is everybody holding out? The semester is almost over! Are you sleeping, taking care of yourself, doing non-work things, and taking time for professional development? And remembering that things are the way they are, and all you can do is to make the best out of it?
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baleful_regards
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« Reply #553 on: December 08, 2012, 9:42:10 PM »

I have one more week to go 'til end of term.

I have developed one of the worst colds in memory. It has settled directly in my chest, leaving me breathless by the time I get to my office on the third floor.

Presentations all next week, though, so I don't have to talk much.
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usukprof
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« Reply #554 on: December 09, 2012, 2:16:49 AM »

I have one more week to go 'til end of term.

I have developed one of the worst colds in memory. It has settled directly in my chest, leaving me breathless by the time I get to my office on the third floor.

Presentations all next week, though, so I don't have to talk much.

You'll get through it!
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Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life, son.  --Dean Vernon Wormer
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