Monthly Archives: May 2013

May Goal Updates

Every other month, I’ve started with some comment about how short the month felt. This month felt like it DRAGGED on. I think that’s because it was so segmented. Classes! Finals Week! Graduation Week! Break! Summer Classes! Seriously. Is May over yet?

Be More Organized

I decided to rearrange my entire apartment. I was hoping that it would involve more throwing away and donating things…but in the end I only brought two giant trash bags of stuff to Goodwill. I can’t tell you how much I threw away because I just carried it to the dumpster as I went. I did NOT want to put it in a pile and then later try to justify keeping something.

I also added more things to my calendars. Yes, I still have multiple. I created a calendar for next school year that I just printed using some boring Microsoft template. Lilly Pulitzer just announced that they are taking pre-orders their 2013 – 2014 agendas…tempting. BUT. I really love my Russell and Hazel planner and I’ve been checking their site on a weekly basis to see if they have 2014 stuff out yet. So far? Nope. GET WITH IT PEOPLE, SOME OF US STILL OPERATE ON AN ACADEMIC CALENDAR. (Or are super-organized Type As. Or both!)

Read More

I finally finished a book I have been reading here and there for MONTHS. Unfortunately, I am not motivated enough to write a book review entry on it. I couldn’t really get into it at the beginning and then silly impatient me went and read the plot summary on Wikipedia, so I spoiled the ending for myself. Oops. I’ve also been reading “The Great Gatsby” this month. I used to read all the time, but this was back before the days of SVU marathons.

I did buy someone “Girls in White Dresses” as a graduation gift. That was one book I had no problem whipping through and I want to try and read it once a year. It sounds silly, but I think the book will mean different things to me as I get older. I also got another special person some books on travel for a graduation gift. Maybe I will convince everybody else that reading is cool and then I will start doing more of it myself!

Schedule More Me Time

I’ve realized that whenever I do “me time” stuff, it’s never scheduled, it’s always on a whim. Oh, I’m not on duty but I’m in the area? Let’s go to the mall! Oh, I need to go to the grocery store and I happen to be wearing sandals and there’s a nail salon? Pedicure time! So, I’m total crap at scheduling me time. I keep saying I need to take advantage of living near a massage therapy school, but I’ve been here a year and still haven’t done so.

Keep In Touch

One unique way I’ve managed to keep in touch with some friends is by helping them with their resumes. Even though we don’t actually see each other in person, I get to communicate with them via email AND find out about what they’re doing now and where they want to go next.

I’ve also been keeping in touch with some sorority sisters because we’re planning our trip. I honestly have to limit how much time I spend on the Disney website because I get too excited.

The biggest thing I did this month was head to UU for Alumni Weekend. It’s like Homecoming, minus the football. One of my friends owns a house about ten minutes from UU, so a bunch of us crashed there. We had a huge barbecue and a camp fire. It was wonderful. We’ve been joking about going on a cruise in a few years to celebrate being out of college for ten years. I hope we actually follow through with that!

Be A Grown Up

My least favorite category. I swear. Well, I still need to pay those doctor’s bills. In fact, I actually need to FIND those doctor’s bills. Oops. I should also probably go to the dentist (and create more bills). But. I have this strange fear of the dentist. So, I’ll put that one off… And last but not least – the dining hall is closed for the summer so I think I’m going to need to re-work my budget to make up for that!

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My Week Without Internet

The internet in my office died recently. Not my whole building, just my individual office. I realized something was up when I hadn’t gotten any emails in an hour. I checked my email on my phone (yay technology!) and found that my inbox was rather full of emails from impatient students. I called IT and the first person that came to my office couldn’t figure it out. The second person couldn’t either. Clearly something was wrong with the hardware that allowed me to access my computer. We just didn’t know what part.

I wound up being without internet in my office for nearly four full days. I wish I could say that I was a much more productive person during that time, but the truth is I spent a lot of time imaging what working in the days before email must have been like. Like most of my friends, I absolutely hate using the phone and resort to email just because it’s not okay to text my boss questions I have that are work-related. Maybe if I had to use the phone more often, I wouldn’t hate it as much.

As I mentioned earlier, I wasn’t completely cut off from the internet. I had access to email on my phone and for important emails, I was sitting at my desk, typing away on my phone. It was kind of frustrating and must have looked absolutely ridiculous. While I had some internet access, it was not ideal.

My biggest gripe with the whole week was that even though I was adding things to my Outlook calendar on my computer, they were not syncing to my phone. Thank god school was out and I didn’t have too much going on because I rely on those fifteen minute reminders that my phone and computer give me.

I know this entire post sounds like a major first world problem – “WAH WAH WAH MY INTERNET’S BROKE!!” but the whole thing reminded me of the article I read earlier this month about the man who WILLINGLY went without internet for a year. I expected my time without internet to be so productive, but instead I found new ways to distract myself. The internet did not make me easily distracted or lazy. I’m that way naturally.

Maybe this whole experience would have been different if everybody else on campus also couldn’t access the internet. Maybe we would be forced to interact with each other more, rather than just shooting emails across campus. But similar to Paul Miller’s experiment, we probably would have SAID we were going to do that and just did nothing until the internet came back.

UPDATE

So in between me first typing this and me scheduling this post, the internet DID go out for the whole campus. Instead of making us be creative, the higher powers sent us home. Which is fine and dandy…except I live on campus. Womp womp.

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Whoever googled “student affairs professionals summers off”…that’s cute.

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Movie Review: The Great Gatsby

I have been eagerly awaiting the release of “The Great Gatsby” ever since they announced that Baz Luhrmann would be directing the movie. He’s the same guy that directed two of my absolute favorite movies – Romeo + Juliet and Moulin Rouge. It’s a book I had a minor obsession with in high school. What could possibly go wrong? Well…a lot.

Total disclaimer – I didn’t see it in 3D. I can’t stand 3D movies. Baz Luhrmann movies tend to be rather…visually interesting, so I can only imagine that the idea of filming a movie in 3D is like a dream come true for him. However, there was enough swooping around that I’m sure if I did see it in 3D, I would have screamed like I did on all those simulation rides at Universal Studios.

My biggest complaint was the amount of times that Gatsby (played by Leonardo DiCaprio*) uses the phrase “old sport”. Normally, I don’t pick up on these sort of things unless someone else points them out, but I noticed this one myself. When this comes out on DVD, I might gather my friends and make a Great Gatsby drinking game…the first rule would be to drink any time he says “old sport”.

Another issue I had with the movie was that there were WAY too many times a scene looked like it could have been right out of Moulin Rouge. Christian, what are you doing in a mental institution in the 1920s?

This is one of those movies that you NEED to read the book first. My mom and I both read the book in high school and we had a pretty good grasp of what was going on, but I remember certain parts MUCH differently.

Did you see “The Great Gatsby”? What did you think?

* = Leonardo DiCaprio REALLY needs to stop playing characters that go after girls they can’t get and then DIE. Particularly in bodies of water.

See also: Romeo + Juliet.

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Things I Don’t Like

Last month, I forgot had absolutely no time to come up with creative posts relating to my job in student affairs, so instead I decided to tell you all about the things I was obsessed with at that very moment. A quick little update on those – “The Carrie Diaries” is on it’s summer hiatus (unless it was secretly cancelled like “Flash Forward” was two years ago), I haven’t gone on any Tumblr blogs in awhile (maybe I should since I’ve been in a perpetually bad mood), I’ve been too poor to eat shrimp from the fancy grocery stores and too scared to visit Walmart this month, that means I’ve also been too poor for a Spirit Jersey (I just found out how much those things cost WHAT?!), and I have a week to finish the current three seasons of Arrested Development before the glorious day that Season 4 arrives is upon us.

Back to the point. The other day, my friend was texting me ridiculous things all day. And I don’t mean ridiculous as in pictures of dogs wearing wigs, but she was asking me all sorts of questions. Maybe she was bored at work? Who knows?

This is what I send friends on a regular basis to cheer them up.

Anywho. So one of the questions read “what are things you don’t like?” Or so I thought. But instead of re-reading it, I started typing this epic list of things I don’t like on my iPad. When I went to trim it down and type it in a text message, I realized she asked me to name things I like. Because that makes sense. So I put my list aside and quickly typed up a list of things I like. HOWEVER since I saved that list, I thought another random post would be a great way to honor everything I can’t stand in life. Here we go, in no particular order.

Slow Drivers

There is nothing that pisses me off than people who CAN’T DRIVE. I swear, I don’t know how they got their licenses, but there are some people that can’t grasp basic concepts like using a blinker or getting out of the passing lane if you’re doing five under and there are a bunch of cars behind you. You don’t know me, you don’t know my life. Yeah, yeah, I just want to get to Target and back before the Grey’s Anatomy finale, BUT WHAT IF I WAS TRYING TO GET MY SICK DOG TO THE EMERGENCY VET? Move.

The Way Glitter Gets Everywhere

Yesterday at dinner, I kept seeing something shiny on my face out of the corner of my eye. When I finally went to the bathroom, I saw that there was glitter ALL OVER MY FACE. I know that can happen when one has an interaction with glitter, but the thing is, I did not see any glitter at all yesterday. No glittery make up, no glitter on anything in my purse…where did it come from?!

My iPhone’s Battery

All it does is die. Seriously. I charge it all day at work and by 8 or 9 pm I’m getting the 20% warning. One time I took a day trip to Manhattan. I made sure to charge the phone fully before leaving and used it minimally on the way there. Once I got there, I texted a few friends, maybe took a few pictures, and then put it back in my pocket. After lunch, it was under 30%, so I took thirty minutes and sat on the floor in the lobby of some random building in Manhattan to charge my phone. I do not live a very glamorous life.

Spiders

I know this is a dislike many individuals have. I routinely find creative ways to kill them while keeping myself as far from them as possible. In the past, these have included throwing a shoe at the wall and spraying them with Windex. However, the other day I faced a terrible dilemma. There was a spider crawling ON MY COMPUTER SCREEN. I can’t just throw a shoe at my computer or spray it with Windex. So, I went for the next logical solution – the vacuum. I used the vacuum tube to get rid of the intruder. Except. My vacuum thinks it’s fancy so it has a clear canister instead of a bag so you can see all the dirt and hair you just sucked off your floor. And it turns out that this spider did not die during his trip through the vacuum and was instead happily crawling around all the dirt and hair. There was no way I was emptying that into my trashcan, so I took the whole thing outside to the dumpster and said goodbye to Mr. Spider there. (I also tried calling three different people to see if they’d empty the canister for me – no luck.)

The Spell Checker On This Thing

Right now it’s telling me that I spelled “spiders” and “battery” wrong even though they are not underlined in this paragraph. It also keeps telling me that “texting” and “texted” aren’t real words, but let me assure you, THEY ARE.

When USA Is Showing Something That Is NOT SVU

I’m not sure exactly what “type” of shows the USA channel shows, but 90% of the time I turn it on, they are in the midst of a Law and Order SVU marathon. These marathons usually have some sort of theme that sounds like it could be the title of a Jerry Springer/Maury Povich episode. I don’t even pay attention to the themes, I just sit back and watch six hours of my life disappear. But, during times of absolute SVU need (having the flu, going to the gym and getting the treadmill closest to the TV), I turn on ol’ faithful and find some other crap show on. SVU has taught me that exercising outside is bad for me – I will either find a dead body or I will become one. Hence why I like to watch it while running INDOORS.

When Pandora Goes On Some Weird Tangent

I have my go-to stations on Pandora that ALWAYS play good music. Except for moments like right now where they play eight songs in a row that sound like they could have been composed by my eleven-year-old-self playing with the keyboards in my music tech class. “WOOO ALL THE NOISES!!!”

 

That, my friends, is all for now. I assure you the list was originally much longer, but I also wasn’t putting paragraphs of back story with each item. I will save the rest for some other time.

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TBT – Graduation

I was not looking forwards to my graduation from Undergrad U. At some point in February, someone made mention of there being 100 days until graduation, and it was like some switch flipped in my brain. Before then, graduation had been some distant event with little meaning. It seemed long enough away that by the time it eventually rolled around, I would have my life together. But once that countdown hit the double digits, I was panicking. I didn’t have a “grown up” job yet. I wasn’t “over” college yet. Heck, I had just started to enjoy myself! And so I spent the next 99 days dreading graduation.

I had no time to process the fact that I was a graduating senior. I literally went straight from taking an exam to listening to some CEO of some company tell me to go out there and make a difference in the world. No cushy senior send off event for me. If I thought that college went by too fast, it was nothing compared to how fast I went from enjoying mixers with my sisters and nights at the bar to packing my apartment up and moving back to my parents house. Speaking of my sisters, there were only two others that graduated when I did. TWO. We didn’t take cute-sy senior pictures or anything of the sort. Not only was I leaving with nothing exciting in my future – nobody was coming into the lonely world of adulthood with me!

As PDFM U gets ready for graduation, I can’t help but to think back on my own graduation and all those thoughts and feelings I had. I wonder how all my students feel – if they’re excited or sad or scared or all three. Are they going to look back fondly on these last few weeks of college or be like me and wish that they had “done more”?

How did I spend my last few weeks? I remember sleepovers in my sorority house’s living room. Late night Taco Bell runs. Driving all over creation with my friends as they looked for a house to rent the following year. Enjoying things at Undergrad U that I had never tried before (true story, I don’t think I used the gym at UU until my last month of college). Maybe I did do enough. Maybe I just wish that college was longer.

I’ve had a few talks with some of my students adjusting to the post-college world. At first I thought that it was just me, that I was the only person having some MAJOR transition issues to life after college. Part of the problem with having only a few sisters graduate was that I had nobody to talk to these things about. Now that all my friends have (finally) joined me in the real world, I see them going through the same struggles I went through. It turns out everything I felt was completely normal. It takes time to get used to not living twenty feet from your best friends and not having something to do every night.

The good news is, I was MUCH more excited about my graduation from Grad School State. All of my friends were graduating with me, we had plenty of adventures together in our last weeks of school, and while I still didn’t have a job, I had a Master’s degree and for some reason that made me feel much more important. It didn’t make me think I could change the world, but it did make me think that I could help somebody that someday might change the world.

I wish there were more resources for those transitioning out of college. For now, there’s a nice network of bloggers that you can count on.

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Curly Girl Update

So back in January, I wrote about my deep dark secret of having naturally curly hair. I was (and still sort of am) at my wits end. Basically, I spent a big chunk of my life being told that curly hair isn’t okay – by teen movies, popular magazines, employers, and even my own friends. It’s gotten to the point where I like myself better with straight hair. While my curly hair is my “real” self, to me it also represents my former self. When I see myself with curly hair, I instantly think back to high school. Except. With all the damage I’ve done to my hair, my curls look NOTHING like they used to.

But wait! How do I know what my curly hair looks like if I never wear it curly? Well. For the past six weeks I HAVE been wearing it curly. It started when I was on vacation. I was doing something during the day where I got my hair wet and that night we were going to dinner and there was not enough time to straighten it in between. AND since I hadn’t packed for wearing my hair curly on the trip, I had absolutely no hair product to even try and tame my hair. *cue horror movie shriek here* I put tons of conditioner in, untangled it with my fingers, and prayed for the best. While the bottom layers LOOKED like they were going to dry into nice ringlets, the top layers were more relaxed and wavy. By the end of the night, the top was practically straight and the bottom looked like a frizzy pyramid. Not attractive. The next morning I went for my standard over-sized messy bun that I rocked all through high school, only to find that my hair was so thin that my bun looked like a tight little librarian bun. Also not attractive.

I was totally concerned about the state of my hair, but I also told myself that I was in a strange place with strange shampoo and NO HAIR PRODUCTS and that when I went back home and unearthed my hair products meant for my curly hair, I’d have no problem. Except. I had the same results at home. My hair was dead. The ten years of straightening and bleaching had killed it. The under layers of my hair (with proper product) do curl into the nice little ringlets I remember from high school. The top layers look like these weird beach-y waves and that would be okay if my whole head was like that, but with all the volume underneath, it looks terrible. Also, the bottom two inches of my hair are stick straight. I hate it more than I hate my “normal” curly hair.

Despite this, I decided to wear my hair curly until the end of the school year. It was rough. My curly hair is NOT predictable. Sometimes I can shower at night and it would be dry before bed. Other nights, I’d have to put it in a bun and try again the next morning. Some days it would look just perfect, other days it would manage to be flat and frizzy at the same time. HOW?!?! On top of all of this, I was on a new medicine that made me gain weight (something very few women want to do) and sent me on a mental health roller coaster. I was not okay. That’s really the only way to put it. Luckily, I got the medicine situation figured out (and lost four pounds) and closer to graduation, I was even starting to like my hair on some days. While there are definitely still dead parts, I was able to pull off the second day messy bun pretty well.

And then the school year ended. And I straightened my hair. Let me tell you, after six weeks of not doing my hair, it took FOREVER. The reason I had been able to cut my hair straightening time down was because of all the damage I had done. However, my hair feels thicker and healthier. Well, except the ends. Seeing myself with straight hair after six weeks reminded me of the first time I ever got my hair blown out. I was so happy!

So what have I decided to do? Well, for starters, I’m growing out my bangs. It’s really hard to wear your hair curly if you have bangs. Second, I’m not going to straighten my hair as much. I will straighten it for special occasions, but most of the time, I’m going to wear it curly. It takes less time, it’s healthier, and maybe the more I do it, the better I’ll feel about it. And lastly, I’m going to stop bleaching my hair. Yes that means I  have some nasty roots and it makes me feel worse, but once they get long enough to justify damaging my hair some more, I’m dying it to my natural color. My goal is to eventually get my long thick hair back, but I’m not sure how long that’s going to take or even if that will ever happen.

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Moving Home

As a young adult, the idea of visiting home sounds wonderful. Family, friends, HBO that I’m not paying for, FREE MEALS…seriously. It’s like a vacation minus the hotel and airfare. When I was in college, I LOVED going home for weekends…maybe a little too much at first. Even now I try to make it home for big events and I still try to see as many people as possible in a short three day weekend.

However…the idea of MOVING HOME?? That had me running and screaming in the other direction. I had spent most of my life and most of college thinking that I’d finish college and move into my own apartment or at the very least an apartment with friends.

This seems like an accurate representation of what I thought my twenties would be like from the ages of…oh….ten to twenty-one.

Except…just like the “Friends” theme song…no one told me how life was going to be this way. Once I graduated college, I had a part time job lined up, but it wasn’t enough to cover rent my security deposit and I was completely SOL.

It actually started a few weeks before I graduated. My mom called. WAIT. No, no, no. This story starts MUCH further back than that.

Part of the reason I didn’t want to move home after graduation was that my family was VERY strict. I distinctly remember my first only summer home during college. The summer actually started off easier than it ended. During dinner, I told my mom I was going to hang out with one of my friends after she got out of work. “Be home by eleven,” was her response. “But mom…she doesn’t get out of work until 10:30.” “Well, I guess you two won’t be seeing each other tonight then!” “Mom, I’m supposed to pick her up from work. She had someone drop her off because those were our plans.” My mom finally agreed that I could go get her (you know because we’re nice people and all) but that I couldn’t hang out afterwards. It was too late. This seemed absolutely archaic to me after nearly an entire year of not having to follow any rules. At school, we wouldn’t even LEAVE for some parties until after eleven. By the end of summer, my 11:00 pm curfew included the computer. I might have gotten in more trouble for calling my house Guantanamo Bay at one point…oops. By the time August rolled around, I was looking for any excuse to move back to school early. After that summer, I didn’t go home for anything longer that a four day break until graduation.

So…back to where I was. It was a few weeks before graduation. My mom called. “When are you moving home?” I laughed. Out loud. While on the phone. “Mom, I’m not moving home, I have a job here. I have an apartment I can stay at. By the way, can I have $1200?” It’s really hard to convince a parent that you are a grown up in the same sentence that you’re asking for money. And that is the story of how I wound up moving home. I was not happy about it. I was dreading the rules and the boredom. Back then there weren’t blogs or advice articles on how to handle this because my graduating class was the start of the wave of students moving home due the recession. My solution was to spend as much time as I could AWAY from home which didn’t exactly please my rule-loving mother. But, as you probably know from reading other posts here, I eventually found my way to grad school, moved out, and got a big girl job.

What can you do if you’re moving home?

Whether you are moving home for the summer or heading back after graduating, there are a few things you can do to make your life (and your parents’ lives) easier.

Have a nice, sit-down discussion about rules. What is a reasonable time that you should be home? Who might be allowed or NOT allowed to spend the night in your room? Do you need to call home with your plans? Certain families are much more relaxed than others. Also, your life situation might be MUCH different than when you last lived at home. Asking a parent if a significant other can stay over in your room while you’re in high school is laughable in most homes. (Granted, it’s still laughable in mine, but that’s another story) In college, your boyfriend or girlfriend might have spent the night with you loads of times. Your parents might tell you that he or she can’t stay in your room. Yes, it sucks, but you know what? I’m not even going to fight that one any more because I know they aren’t budging. I did eventually break my mom down on the curfew…after I graduated I had to come home “when the bars close”. Good thing I live on the border…2 am closing time on one side, 4 am on the other. Sorry not sorry.

Know what’s expected of you. Do you have to help with any chores around the house or baby sit for your younger siblings? Do your parents need help with the rent or paying any bills? Even if your parents tell you that they don’t want your money or your help, offer from time to time! Make dinner for the family one night or help out with raking the leaves. I bought my parents something they had wanted for awhile but didn’t really have the extra money for. Another time, I surprised them by paying their bill at a restaurant.

Find something to do. I had lost touch with my home friends so while I was home, I really had nothing to do. I wound up joining a gym and eventually creating a new friend group consisting of old and new friends. If you’ve been gone for awhile, it’s really like moving to a new city.

Lastly, come up with some sort of timeline. If you’re just moving home for the summer, that’s pretty simple. You’re going back to school. If you’re moving home with no end date in sight…that’s a different story. Once you have a job, set a goal for yourself! You will save $X per month so you can get your own place in Y months. Tell your parents this goal so they can help in any way they can, whether it’s looking for apartments, finding furniture, or even helping you move!

What advice do you have for those moving home?

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Social Media Concerns

Sometimes I wonder what it would be like to have my job before the days of social media. While I enjoy it for personal use, it honestly can make some days turn into a major headache once I get complaints of students using Facebook or Twitter to bully one another or to post pictures of things that they shouldn’t have in their rooms or apartments (yes, we do see your party pictures). I imagine that before Facebook, students shared pictures the same way they shared them when I was in middle school – getting them developed and passing the envelope around. Also, I know that before I had a digital camera, I took WAYYYY less pictures because it was so expensive!

I already mentioned that students posting pictures of inappropriate activities can get them in trouble. I had friends get in trouble for this my first year at Undergrad U. They had been drinking one night in their room with a few friends and took some pictures and of course posted them on Facebook and I believe somebody reported them to a Residence Life Professional so then of course they got in trouble. I’ve had other instances of students or friends posting about things in their room (street signs, pets) and get in trouble for that as well.

A more recent phenomenon has been these “Confessions” pages. Undergrad U has had a pretty active page for a month or two now, usually filled with things like “I think my RA is hot” or “I had sex in the library/locker room/bathroom/etc”. Most of the time these are harmless, but other times students talk about hurting themselves or others and we have no way to find out who posted it.

Students definitely don’t understand the consequences of posting certain things online. With Facebook, the things you posted are most certainly linked with your real name. Trust me, it’s not fun to have to go through years of pictures and un-tag or delete inappropriate photos. It’s even worse when you have message people you haven’t talked to in ages asking them to take down their photos they may have posted of you. I didn’t have a Facebook until I was in college, but some of these students have had Facebook since they were thirteen…that’s going to be a LOT of Facebook digging their senior year!

Now, it’s not like I go creeping on the internet looking for my students’ Facebook and Twitter accounts trying to get them in trouble. Trust me, I don’t want to see this stuff. The less I know, the better! But if we are made aware of something, we have to chat with the student about it. I usually hear a lot of, “I had no idea you could see that!”

Another issue that has been happening with Residence Life (and it’s something that started happening while I was still a student) is that after receiving their roommate assignment, a student will go look up his or her new roomie on Facebook. Sometimes, the parent does this. And then all hell breaks loose. “My child cannot live with this heathen! They have PARTY pictures on Facebook!” While Facebook can be great for roommates and other incoming students to get to know each other, it becomes a problem when a student uses Facebook to “play up” one aspect of his or her life.

What are some issues that social media has created at your job? How do you work with students on addressing social media concerns?

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We’re Pretty Lucky

Last week, I found myself with some extra time off and decided to take a long weekend and visit Grad School State. It was definitely a much deserved vacation.

I was happy to get off campus for once. It seems that even when I’m not on call, I tend to stick around (now that I’m making friends in the area) but as long as I’m in the city, I feel the need to be “on”. What’s that mean? Well, if something serious were to happen, if I’m on campus, I’m going to have to jump in. And if I’m around the city, I need to make sure I’m on my best behavior. During RA training, we talk about how RAs are role models to their residents. Who do you think act as role models for the RAs? Oh you know, the pro staff.

I was also glad to see all the people I knew from GSS. I had friends that were in lots of different departments and it was nice to see them after all this time and hear what they have been up to. Everybody in my program seems to like their jobs. I only know of two that are searching and it’s not so much that they don’t like their jobs, but rather they are relocating to be closer to a significant other. My friends from outside the program…that’s a different story. They always seem to be looking for something better or complaining about something. Part of me wants to smack them…”Oh, I’m sorry, your boss asked you to come in on a Saturday? I had to go to the hospital with a kid with alcohol poisoning at three am.” But then I realized we’re the lucky ones! We like our jobs! It must suck to get called into a job that you don’t like on a Saturday.

The moment that it really hit me, I was talking with someone who is looking for his next job and he just seemed really down and said, “Oh well, it’s not like you can get your dream job right out the gate or even ten years down the road.” I don’t know about the rest of you, but I did! Granted, I’ve always thought about “dream _____” in a much more reasonable way than others. I know that I can’t have some high level job right after graduation, so I kept my goals in the entry level arena. I also tell people that my dream car is a car that only costs about $40K which isn’t exactly unreasonable. Back to my original point…

People also keep telling me that they “admire that I’m doing what I love even though it means I’ll be poor for the rest of my life” (except sometimes it’s more eloquently said). Yes, I know that I have a masters and I know that my job requires more than the normal nine-to-five and I’m sure if you divided the amount I make by the hours I worked, we would find that I would have been better off as a stock room worker at a chain clothing store that sells overpriced jeans, but that’s not the point. I’m happy with my job. At the moment, I’m able to make ends meet. I’m not on the border of being starving and homeless. I guess what I want to say to those people is sorry I value my happiness over a paycheck (#notsorry). 

Sorry that went a bit towards the rant-y side. I’m not even mad, I’m just happy with my job. I do have friends that aren’t in student affairs that do like their jobs. I also have friends that are still looking for their dream jobs but are making sure they are taking on the “right” responsibilities and projects in their current job to help them attain that dream job one day.

If you’re not in your dream job yet, what is your dream job? What steps are you taking to get there?

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