I've been doing a bunch of conferences lately.
One student's aunt just died, killed by a drunk driver. My student was way more together than I would have been under the same circumstances.
One of my best students was visibly shaking during our conference. I don't know why, but I suspect nerves. It boggles my mind that I make someone nervous, but I remember being horribly embarrassed and nervous talking to professors myself. She's writing her research paper on dealing with student stress, a topic that seems especially fitting. I hope it's going to help her learn how to deal with what she's going through. She's got great potential and is a real pleasure to have in class.
One of my students actually interviewed (on the phone) a professional who's been working with her family on a family matter (for her research paper), and was thrilled that the professional took the time to talk to her and answer her questions.
Another student reports that he went to talk to a professor for another class about the topic of her paper, and the professor offered helpful resources.
Here's a quiet thanks to all the teachers, lawyers, professors, social workers, counselors, doctors, nurses, and other hard working folks who've taken time out to talk to a student about a research paper. I know you folks are busy, but if you could see how much your time and consideration matters to my students, you'd feel amply rewarded.
One of my advisees came out of the woodwork to have me sign a drop sheet. She usually wanders by once a semester to have me sign something, but doesn't seem to want much more.
I ran into another advisee in the hall; he's getting ready to graduate! It's so great to see how much he's matured and come into his own.
And so, to quote Kurt Vonnegut, it goes.