Thursday, March 17, 2011

Academic Stuff ....

So on the dissertation front ... I have a couple of things bubbling. First of all, I have two conferences coming up soon. The first one is at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale where I am a grad student (April 2). I am doing a talk titled, "'I'm Not Racist But ...': Using Race as Writing Prompts in ENG 101." The whole objective here is to do a quick overview of my research from this past year. The second conference, at Allerton, IL, is sort of the same thing but with a different title: "Celebrate, Reflect, and Renew: Alternative Readings in FYC." Both should give me the perfect opportunity to bring material together so I will have a better grasp of what I am doing -- and still need to do -- in terms of the dissertation.

And then yesterday another cool opportunity came my way -- the Review Editor for Teaching English in the Two Year College asked me to review a manuscript that someone wrote (something about developmental English). Though this takes some energy away from my research, it DOES get me writing and thinking -- and that is always a good thing.

I am definitely an academic scholar wanna-be! I love Howard Tinberg, a two-year college scholar who adamantly believes that those of us teaching in community college MUST work at engaging with scholarship: "We need to ground our teaching in theory. We also need to go out to conferences and remain connected, which is difficult since we're teaching four or five classes a semester and we need to work harder to get out and meet other professors to exchange a dialogue." ( Tinberg came up with a term "Teacher Scholar" (at least, I think that was him!) to describe what we should be striving for (or at least *some* community college folks -- I don't think everyone needs to be like this).

Anyway -- In the real world, I am tired of being anxious -- about Libya, Egypt, Collective Bargaining, Japan ...

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