Thursday, May 7, 2009

End of Grad School - Almost

Tuesday was my last day of class, and the end of my coursework I need for my Master's degree. I was fairly bouncy, especially because I got to hand in all the work that had been piling up (namely the paper I had to write), so my last class was relief at being done, concern about my grade, and concern about the block on my account (because I owe school $115, and oh, apparently I still have a library book that I can't find). Nevertheless, the rest of this week I have officially given myself off, have granted myself permission to watch TV all day if I want, and to not sub and not feel guilty about it. Yesterday and day I have been the official lazy girl of Long Island.

I'm feeling a combination of relief at being done with my coursework, and anxiety about the future. (The job market is old news, but I can still be worried.) This afternoon I got an e-mail from the New York City Dept. of Education that began: "As you may have heard, Chancellor Joel Klein announced yesterday that there will be new guidelines that principals must follow when hiring teachers for the 2009-2010 school year. Specifically, due to uncertain economic times and reduced budgets, schools have been restricted to filling vacancies through the internal transfer process, meaning they can only consider current NYC DOE teachers who apply to change schools or who have been placed in excess. Later in the summer, this hiring restriction may be lifted if we find there is a lack of internal candidates available in a subject or geographic area." So in essence, it looks bad in getting a job unless you already have a job. This seems backwards somehow, but there’s not much I can do except keep applying to any job, both within the field and education and outside the field of education, I think I can do.

The employment position for summer is tenuous. I cannot find the words to explain how much I want to go to DMAC but I doubt I will be able to go unless I win a scholarship, and there’s no word on that. And not wanting to be a pessimist, but deciding to go with realism, I suspect I won’t get any funding from the DMAC people. I had signed up to work at the English Summer Institute again this summer, and was going to work there in July and tutor at ARC. However, because of funding one section of ESI was canceled and I got the shaft. I completely understand how these things sometimes happen, but the reasoning behind the job being rescinded was that I had already worked ESI last summer (which is true), but I would also be tutoring at ARC. Of course, the situation is a complete catch-22: I can’t afford just to work at ARC, but I could have swung it if I was also working ESI (which I can’t work because it was thought I’d be working at ARC) – so now there’s a distinct possibility I can’t tutor at ARC either because I need something more full time. I’ve been applying for summer school teaching gigs, but really I’m just applying for anything that looks halfway decent, which means also applying for jobs that pay $7/hour.

This week was further made awesome by my having lost my cell phone yet again. This time I managed to drop my iPhone in the subway, and I didn’t realize I had dropped it until I was at the next station. Thinking I had left it in one of the restrooms at school, I turned around and went back to LIU, but of course it wasn’t there. Things worked out, as they seem to do for me in these cases; a very nice (I think Russian or Ukrainian) woman found my phone and left a message for JB in upstate New York. I called her and traipsed down to Sheepshead Bay on Tuesday morning to pick it up. It was quite an adventure: It was raining; I had no umbrella; I was wearing my new sandals (because it’s spring, damnit); the subway stop I was supposed to get off at was closed for construction, so I got off at the next stop and had a slightly longer walk to find the address. Coming back I went to the original subway station that I’d wanted to get off at and discovered that at least going the uptown side was open, but I had misjudged the amount of time I needed to travel within Brooklyn and I was 25 minutes late for work, rather dampened and already tired by the process but I got my iPhone back and my peeps at work were very understanding.

Tuesday evening I met Chris and a bunch of his tech guys Twitter friends for dinner at Hill Country. It was fabulous as always, but I ate way too much meat (and only meat). It’s rare that I eat too much meat in one sitting, and yesterday I found that all I wanted was a nice leafy salad for dinner. And chicken. No more red meat for the day, if you please.

But the good news of the week is that I am one thesis away from completing my Master's degree. I'm feeling good about this for the first time all semester.

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