distinguished instructors?

Filigree – Nicolás Paris (1977), by Pedro Ribeiro Simões on Flickr, used under a CC-BY 2.0 licenseToday’s news bulletin from Virginia Tech announced, “Two faculty members receive 2016 SCHEV Outstanding Faculty Award.” It’s a good and wonderful thing for the two professors: Jacqueline E. Bixler, Alumni Distinguished Professor of Spanish, and Michael F. Hochella Jr., University Distinguished Professor of Geosciences.

It also gave me a couple of ideas. One rarely hears of a “Distinguished Instructor.” If the academy really wanted to support and recognize the work of the best instructors, we would find a collection of Distinguished Instructors at every school. But we don’t.

Further down, the article mentioned that “Bixler is an inductee in the Academy of Teaching Excellence….” Now the ATE is a Virginia Tech organization, and instructors can be included. As my eyes wandered over that sentence however, I wondered why the discipline hasn’t created some national or international academy that recognizes excellence on the part of adjuncts and other non-tenure track faculty.

Since adjunct positions frequently require instructors to teach at multiple institutions simultaneously and/or to hop from one institution to another, as the job market requires, those in the adjunct category may not be able to build the recognition at one institution to be recognized by its academy. Why not create something as a field that allows us to recognize the body of work across institutions and raise the profile of some of the hardest-working teachers out there?


[Photo credit: Filigree – Nicolás Paris (1977), by Pedro Ribeiro Simões on Flickr, used under a CC-BY 2.0 license]

@newsfromtengrrl for 2016-01-08

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@newsfromtengrrl for 2016-01-03

just 10 minutes a day…

Watch Face, by Chris Roach, on Flickr, used under a CC-BY-NC 2.0 licenseOn Wednesday, I happened upon Daphne Gray-Grant’s “How 5 minutes a day can revitalize your writing.” I am writing constantly, so I’m not sure how much I need revitalized. I do know however that I have lots of quick thoughts or ideas that I want to get down so that I might be able to expand upon them later.

I posted this thought about Gray-Grant’s article on Facebook that day:

Wondering about this gimmick as a writing strategy/resolution. I have so many one-off, short, undeveloped ideas floating through my head. What if instead of saving them for later (which almost never materializes) or giving them up because I don’t have time or the know-how to do the relevant research, what if instead of all that, I try to write them down in five minutes or so?

The 10 in tengrrl makes me feel like that should be ten minutes rather than five, but even ten minutes a day is probably doable as long as I don’t get it into my head that every day has to be a stellar accomplishment. Maybe it’s time to create a new five (or ten) minute blog. I just have to decide whether this is a silly gimmick or a strategy for publishing ideas and stories that I too often give up on.


[Photo Credit: Watch Face, by Chris Roach, on Flickr, used under a CC-BY-NC 2.0 license]

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