In the beginning there was grad school. That ended in 2010. Now what do I blog about?


May 23, 2010

with highest honors

May 20, 2010

It was a beautiful summer-like day. After the 1.5 hour drive, Hub and I stopped for lunch at a harborside restaurant before heading to campus. The ceremony was just for the graduate schools so the audience was fairly small although there were hundreds of graduates. The auditorium was overly warm and everyone was wishing the event had been scheduled outside. People were restless through the commencement address given by Sara-Lightfoot Lawrence whose speech was unnecessarily depressing, a litany of the atrocities committed by the human race in the last 60 years, from racism, to genocide to 'priests raping our children'. Not ceremonious, nor inspiring. Finally the graduates were called forth to receive their degrees. After we filed outside to find...nothing. Budget cuts eliminated the traditional champagne toast and chocolate covered strawberries. Hub and I left and headed for the brewery where we had a feast and cooled off in the AC before driving home.

The next day I completely crashed. I was wiped out - physically and emotionally drained from the last 2.5 years of hard work and study and the final weeks of anxiety and elation.

May 18, 2010

Graduation is the day after tomorrow

And I haven't got a thing to write about!

Been busting hump on finishing the graduate assistantship project that has plagued me, er, that I have been working on since last fall.

Been busting out ideas for continuing the social media seminar series in the fall. I actually have enough material to do a semester long course so if any of you higher ed peeps out there need a PT or temp faculty, let me know!

Oh, and I have gotten in a few rounds of disc golf, so that's a good thing, too. And I have seedlings growing in the back yard. My 2nd attempt at getting some blooming perennials into the yard; last years seedlings did not take. And its been warm enough and not raining in the evenings so I get to walk outside after dinner. Nice.

May 11, 2010

And Here Is How I Work…Everyone else is blogging about it so why can't I?

Bloggers this week are posting answers to a few work related questions. I'll jump on that since all I seem to do is work.

1. How many days do you work per week?
I work 5 but more often than not I am logging in to check work email and rid my inbox of simple random tasks that could really ruin my Monday morning. Sometimes it is just adding an event to the web calendar, or replying to a simple question. I spend 30 -60 min over the course of the weekend doing that. If I have something due Monday I'll work on it over the weekend to be sure it is ready and done correctly. Last weekend I spent about 5 hours working on lecture materials for a talk I was giving.

2. How many hours do you work, in total, every week?
50-60, depending on what's happening. In higher ed everything goes in cycles - recruitment, orientation, training, exam prep, exams, break,
training, exam prep, exams. In medical education the cycles are shorter, vary from academic year to year, and run July 1- June 30 so there are no breaks. I like my work. I am happy with work so I don't mind. When I start to feel burned out I cut it back by taking on fewer projects. I am lucky to have a great deal of autonomy where most of the time I can pick and choose projects.

3. Do you have a fixed work routine? How does it look like?
Email and phone message come first. Anything that can be handled quickly gets done immediately. Anything that is fun or interesting gets done second. Anything dreadful or dull gets done last.

I take care of routine web updates on Mondays (news, events) and manage the list-serv tool (adds, drops, stats). I get into major web creation and renovation on Tuesdays. Wednesdays I use for scheduling meetings and consultations, so I get to spend the middle of the week out & about, meeting with people in different places on campus. Thursday is project day - working on pieces of whatever projects I have going. Friday is 'Photoshop Friday'. I save any graphic design stuff (banners, buttons, templates) or digital imaging work (scanning EKGs, manipulating clinical images) for Fridays.

4. How many times per year do you take vacations, and how long are they?
In June I go to the beach for a week - I go without any technical stuff. I go with my beach chair and a stack of books. In August I do the same but camping instead of the beach. I take a few days off between Christmas and New Years, too. I schedule a few long weekends here and there to do gardening or to do nothing at all.

I consider my conference attendance as vacation, too. I try to hit one national and one regional higher ed or med ed conference each year. The national ones are 3-4 nights away from home. This year it'll be San Antonio TX. Regional ones are day trips.

5. How many hours per day do you spend on email?
I'm in email all day. Since I work in web tech, people are always emailing stuff to me - Can you put this on our web page? Can you add this to the web calendar? It is a steady stream of such requests. I don't let them pile up since I'm logged in most of the time anyway.

6. When you are not working, what are you doing?
The last two years have been grad school. I look forward to being done and having real free time again and lots of it! I have plans for landscaping the front yard. I'd like to paint the shed and finish staining the woodwork in the kitchen and living room. I'd like to improve my disc golf game. I might get a bicycle.

If you write a blog, answer the same questions to continue the meme.

View the source of this meme here: , Daniel Stucco on

May 07, 2010

Cap. Check. Gown. Check.

The photo is crappy but you get the point.