Rookie Journalism Prof

I’ve decided to subtitle this blog “Rookie Journalism Prof” because, really, it’s true.

Even though I have 11 semesters under my belt as an adjunct in The University of Alabama’s College of Communication and Information Sciences, and a year-long stint teaching with Chung Dahm Learning in Seoul, South Korea, this new position with West Texas A&M is totally different.
Actually teaching class doesn’t concern me, and moving from one class per semester as an adjunct to three isn’t really that big of a deal. Besides, I was teaching three-to-six hours a day in Seoul, and that wasn’t a problem.
What’s different are the expectations. I’ve been hired to teach a 3-3 course load, meaning that I’ll be assigned three classes this fall and three in the spring. I’ll also be advising the student newspaper, The Prairie. I’m quite excited about that, and having been practicing journalism for nearly the past two decades, I have no illusions that this part of my job is going to take up some serious time. I’m cool with that.
So that takes care of two-thirds of the academic triangle — teaching and service. WT is making a significant push on the third component — research — and I was hired with the expectation of producing scholarly work, as well.
What I hope to do during my first fall semester here is (quickly) learn how to balance all three of these requirements. A former professor of mine gave me some great advice recently.
“You have to feed the beast,” he said. “Just don’t get eaten by the beast.”

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