Friday, March 26, 2010

The last push

Today was the last working day of Spring Break, and I spent it hard at work -- catching up on student work in my sophomore class, and participating in a nearly two-hour webconference with a national committee.

And as I left the office, I reflected on what is upcoming. When school starts again on Monday, there are four weeks left until final exams and commencement. This is the last push. Papers will be submitted, revisions solicited, projects presented. Next time I come up for air, it will be summer.

The proximity of summer gives us all hope, student and faculty alike. For students, it means a few months away from the crush of deadlines and assignments; for faculty, a chance to pursue long-term projects away from the grind of class meetings and grading.

In the past month, I've turned in proposals for a couple of major conferences; I'm hoping to have the task of preparing for a presentation or two before classes resume in the fall. There will be follow-up work on assessment coming from last summer's strategic planning. I'll be involved with a task force that has a final report due in October, and will be meeting frequently over the summer.

The real trick in April is not to be too beguiled by the prospect of May. There's still almost a third of the semester to go; the class meetings and structure defining this last month will mean the difference between major accomplishments for students and just marking time.

No comments: