Thursday, April 18, 2013

Life After Tenure

Dr. Crazy over at Reassigned Time 2.0 has a fine post up about life after tenure.  It's really smart (as usual) and also gives a strong sense of some of the things people should know and look forward to (with longing or dread).

I think her points about feeling pressure to contribute to the community (rather than trying to establish oneself) and about feeling pulled by different demands so that she has less time/energy to work with and teach her own ideas/research are especially useful.

Recently, too, Dr. Virago over at Quod She 2.0 had a post about the difficulties of feeling like she was in a "mid-career rut."

Both of these posts really resonated with me.

I'd add to Dr. Crazy's post about being pulled by different demands that one of the biggest demands I feel is the work on department and university personnel committees and such.  Those tasks seem to take up a huge amount of time, and while they can feel rewarding, they can also feel unrewarded, if that makes sense. 

Now, back to our regularly scheduled grading.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, yes, especially to the demands related to committees. There have been some interesting conversations in my department lately, comparing one group of people who work particularly hard on being good teachers and committing themselves to important service work, to another who are relatively isolated from the rest of the university, mediocre at best in the classroom, but chug along and publish a lot, and are therefore quicker to reach raises and promotions. The conversations always begin "gee it's too bad that the people who do the real work don't get rewarded for it," and the response is always "but it's not like we didn't know the rules," which clearly articulate a preference for publication. [and I say "we" because fortunately or unfortunately, I'm in the first camp of the relatively-unrewarded.] It's frustrating to be torn between things I care about and know to be important to the university, and the knowledge that I will be rewarded more if I ignore those things.