I’m feeling a huge rush of relief today after end of term. Over the past month, I’ve attended doctoral workshops at three different universities in Switzerland (all in different cities) and finished teaching and grading my course for undergraduates. On top of all of that, my 2 year old son has been sick twice, meaning he was at home with a 103.5/40 degree temp for a week one time and then after a week of being okay, another half a week.
It’s been an intense end to the semester to say the least. I am really looking forward to having longer periods of time to focus on my own work — scholarship and writing, both academic and creative — without having to juggle so many immediate deadlines.
I got home from a 2-day trip to Bern last night, and this final workshop was a nice transition to research, writing, and revision mode. Most often these doctoral events comprise lectures by invited professors, which are generally interesting and engaging, with long lunches when we get to meet speakers and other students for informal networking. This event lasted two days, and after a day of discussing the work and practices of the guest faculty, we tried to apply some of the discussion to our work through hands-on exercises.
This was a really nice break from traditional academia for me — as a writer, I love process — and I enjoyed working in small groups with students whose research is quite different from mine but share a few surprising points of intersection.
I’m looking forward to taking a few days to reflect on both this semester’s teaching and the term more generally while digging into independent work.