rebeccmeister: (Default)
[personal profile] rebeccmeister
I believe it was Sunday morning when S accidentally caused my current favorite coffee mug to pop off of the drying rack and land with a whack in the kitchen sink. I now have 3 items at home that all have similar chunks missing from one lip, waiting to be expoxied back together. If only I had time and energy while at home for working on such things.

Right in the middle of the ride home last night, the skies opened up and unleashed buckets of water onto my head. Thankfully I managed to pull out the pannier covers and pack everything away right before that all happened. Yesterday my office smelled like a gym locker because of the soggy bicycling gear.

We've been trying a new arrangement of things in the kitchen, with the toaster oven stacked on top of the microwave, because the microwave's door points in the wrong direction for the other counter. But when S tried to run both appliances simultaneously, the power died, and it didn't trip any of the breakers. When he tried to go downstairs to check the breakers, he tripped and slid on the carpeting.

The oven still worked, so we had dinner after 8 pm, and by then any wind that was left in my sails was completely gone.

I want to update my finances so I can start looking ahead and dealing with decisions like whether or not we can afford to travel for Christmas, whether or not I can bite the bullet and order a kayak towing device before things freeze this year, etc. I know how to be patient and save up for things (see: erg, Froinlavin, etc), but it's hard when I haven't had the bandwidth to scrape together any sort of plan.

We had an all-college faculty meeting yesterday that was kind of analogous to my feelings about my personal financial situation. The rallying cry from the leadership is, "We're losing money!! Enrollment is dropping!" but without any sort of concrete vision for how the college will work to transform itself in the face of modern demographic and financial realities. At least for my personal finances I can come up with a plan to turn things around. For my professional life, I think I'm going to try and focus on leadership skills across all levels: my own leadership skills, both in this institution and beyond; the leadership skills of my students*; and how to foster a stronger sense of ownership and leadership among my colleagues. It helps that I'm in a strong department, at least.

*A point I like to emphasize with students: no matter what the degree, after they graduate students will find it most valuable to have developed their written and oral communication skills, as well as their leadership skills, as these are things that are useful across all walks of life.

Date: 2018-09-27 02:26 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] rainswolf
I think most colleges are going through this. In Pennsylvania (where I teach at a private college), apparently almost none of the colleges met enrollment or revenue goals in the past year. And everyone is trying to re-design themselves, figure out how to save themselves, but everything is a gamble.

I've seen this college waste hundreds of thousands or more of dollars trying new initiatives they hoped would be a cashmine, and the initiatives just failed...

Falling enrollment

Date: 2018-09-27 03:36 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] shalpacafarm
Any mention of the number of people in other countries unwilling to send their kids here for school now? My impression is that it’s dropped off precipitously?

Date: 2018-09-27 06:44 pm (UTC)
moodyduck: (Default)
From: [personal profile] moodyduck
My first apartment in Santa Barbara was built around 1940 and the toaster and microwave at the same time would trip the breaker. And all the breakers were outside in a dark nook full of spiders. Of course we never tripped it in daylight. Or maybe it was an actual fuse so we had to use the microwave in the living room until it could be replaced.

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