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A First Real Post

Well, if you're here, you're perhaps wondering what I'm up to. So here we go.

I graduated from St. Olaf College with a degree in chemistry in May 2002. The following fall, pursuant with Career Choice #1 (teaching chemistry at the high school level) I student taught at Eden Prairie High School for 12 weeks, teaching chemistry to your average, suburban, mostly white 11th graders. This experience neither encouraged nor dissuaded me from going into teaching. I spent the rest of that school year substitute teaching, correcting tests at Data Recognition Corp., and at my part-time library job, all the while pondering what kind of full-time employment I should aim towards.

You see, Career Choice #1 was just that -- the first idea about what kind of occupation might suit me, a bright kid with diverse interests and a chemistry degree from a liberal arts college. I had never felt it was my true calling and passion, like some of my friends I student taught with. But neither did I think that it would be a terribly bad choice of a career -- it was in academics, working with kids, and using my degree. Honestly, it was my choice mostly because I lacked even a Career Choice #2, much less a #3 or #4.

Fortunately, this pondering came to an end in March 2003. The good news was that I found Career Choice #2. Actually, it was less that I found it and more that I finally noticed what had been staring me in the face for much of my academic life. Libraries. Duh -- the more I thought about it, the more it seemed to fit. And after a chat with Charlie Priore, my former boss at St. Olaf, I decided that getting my master's in library science (MLS) would be a good thing for me to do.

The bad news was that it was far too late to start a graduate school search for Fall 2003. So I was still left with a rather large period of time to fill with some sort of financially lucrative activity. And there I was, with a license to teach.

Well, one thing led to another and, a little over a year ago, I accepted a position at Robbinsdale Cooper High School (which I later learned is the second most diverse high school in MN after Patrick Henry High in Minneapolis), teaching 9th graders physical science. Somehow I knew this wasn't the right choice even on that day. The first week of school was the longest and most stressful week of my life. Needless to say, this was my cue to start the gears turning for Career Choice #2. I immediately began applying to graduate school in library science for Fall 2004.

So from then until January, I did as good a job as a first year teacher could, and also succeeded in driving myself crazy and depressed worrying about my job. Thankfully I had a caring mother, a fun group of friends, some awesome colleagues, two outlets to sing and -- most importantly -- my grad school apps and the knowledge that this job was temporary to keep me from going over the edge. Even so, sometime in mid-January, something cracked. Ask my students about the week their teacher was gone 3 days out of a 4 day week. As if I needed another sign that this wasn't the gig for me.

From February until school ended on June 4th, I did a better job of keeping myself sane, at the expense of doing a far worse job at teaching. <shrug> So it goes. I was bolstered during this time as well by exciting news from the graduate school front -- Indiana University offered me a scholarship package that will basically make tuition for my first year of study free, as well as a part time job in the chemistry library there. The decision was not hard -- IU, here I come!

The end of school could not have come soon enough. I soon found myself with more time on my hands than I knew what to do with. I've spent some of it rollerblading, reading, and fooling around on the Internet. And, of course, travelling. I took a four day trip to Indiana to search for housing, and I just recently returned from a ten day jaunt to Albuquerque to visit friends. But soon I will be leaving... my lease here in Edina runs out on July 31st, at which point I'll be crashing at my parents' house for two weeks until I can move in to my place in Indiana. In between now and then, I would love to see friends as much as I can... although the vagaries of moving and planning for moving restrict my time, I'm sure I will have evenings free.

After then... well, I guess you'll just have to keep checking back. :) It's been a long time since I've chronicled my activities in any way, but I will certainly do my best. I know that I am often curious what my far-away friends are up to -- what they are learning and thinking and doing. If you are too... then we're a good match.

Talk with you soon.


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on July 21, 2004 7:26 PM.

The previous post in this blog was A First Post.

The next post in this blog is Adios, Edina... hello, Stillwater.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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