Friday, February 24, 2006

I Need a Drink or Ten

My students and colleagues (well I am sure they do not consider me their colleague, but for lack of a better word and for funsies, I am going to call them that) are doing my head in! Right, one thing at a time. First my students. Because of some serious lack of foresight and perhaps some mild dementia, I allowed my students to pick their own topics for oral presentation. (Yes, I know those of you who are teachers are smirking right now.) I did put some limits and added some rules to go along with the presentations, such as they had to be about an English speaking culture, no plagerizing, no reading during presentations, the basics. Sounds like it should have been a straight forward exercise, right? ARRRRR. No, no, no, no. I am not going even to waste the space to explain why having to endure some form of torture would have been infinitely more pleasant.

On to the colleagues. They are definitley worse than my students. I was offered the position here again. Not wanting to eliminate any of my opportunities, I politely asked to be allowed to think about it. At first (and by one of the few members of faculty who has been nice to me), I was told I had until June to make my decision. Fantastic. Not that I would take that long. If, by late April, I know I have no job opportunities and do not get accepted into law school, I should be able to make up my mind about staying here fairly easy. I thought the situation was handled nicely and my life could continue running smoothly. Nope. The day following the job offer, I was told (by a different colleague) I have to make my decision immediately because other people are waiting for my job and that of course, since I am here, I have preference. However, I certainly understood from the conversation that the other candidates are preferable. Thank you, again.

The problem with the second part of the story is that it comes from a person who decided only last week to make an effort to meet me. Funny, I didn't see her putting the thorn in my side when I introduced myself (so really no effort to meet me at all on her part). In one week since meeting me, she has sent several of her students to me, at any hour, regardless of whether I have class or if I want to go to lunch. For all kinds of reasons. If they have a question about the United States; if they want to go to the U.S.; if they saw an English speaking program on television they have a question about. They are driving me crazy. AND to top it all off, I am actually supposed to "talk up" ASU to these students. Why in the world would I do that? I graduated twice from ASU and I can't get a real job. I worked at that moneypit for 3 years for less than a waitress makes and then they closed the department where I worked. I am in debt up to my eyeballs. Not to mention that all the professional contacts at ASU connected with the program at this University completely abandoned me before I ever left the U.S. and then had the nerve to scold me via email. And I am supposed to talk the students here into going to ASU? Don't think so!

So yes, if I wasn't feeling so bad, I would have a pint or two.

AFTER THOUGHT: I should mention the great professors I have met at ASU. Despite the lack of feeling (or maybe my excessive feelings) on my part for the "business" aspect of ASU, I do feel as though there are some really fantastic members of faculty there.


Vanessa said...

You're not obligated to "talk up" ASU, so don't. The only good thing about that school is a few of the English professors, whom I think are WAY over-qualified to be teaching there. (Oh, and my wonderful brother, or course!!)

Angela in Europe said...

Yes, I should have mentioned the fantastic professors at ASU. They are superior to all other aspects of ASU