Last night, I wrapped up grading for the two classes I was teaching last winter and thus I put an end unofficially to one of the toughest school years I have ever had. There was the faculty strike (which did actually finally get resolved a couple weeks ago), there was the murder of a student in her dorm room and subsequent cover-up of the murder by the administration at EMU. There were some internal “challenges” in the department I’d rather not discuss here, and there were my own challenges of being the Interim WPA.
And yet, Dickensesque, it was also the “best of times.” The turmoil of the strike led to the creation of EMUtalk.org, which in many ways has led me to my current (well, sorta current) research that is actually going to get me a sabbatical of sorts next year. Being the Interim WPA was a lot of fun and super-duper interesting. I’m coming off of some of the best teaching experiences I’ve had, especially the online version of English 516. And I’m getting promoted next year to “full” professor, which is nice.
One way or the other though, this break is going to be short and not much of a break. I’m getting ready to teach two classes during the 7.5 week spring term, and one of them, English 444: Writing for the World Wide Web, is going to be all online for me for the first time. That combined with the short term has me very worried, and getting ready for both this and the other class I’m teaching in the spring (English 328, which is the class I teach all the time) will make the next week not much of a break.
Still, the weather is supposed to be pretty nice and I’ve firmly committed myself to going into the office only once this next week. I might be able to sneak in my first 18 holes….
Anyway, here’s to the end, here’s to the next term around the corner.