It’s back to school time, which means it’s back to work time for me. And this first week back is always a mixed bag of feelings. First, there is the joy of seeing everyone at the “be back” gathering. (Be back, the day we all have to be back to work). Hugs and expressions of joy shared with everyone. Chances are if things are going well at the College, and things seem to be going very well at the College, we as faculty members won’t see our colleagues that we don’t share an office or division with for the next four months, because we will be too busy. Second, at the meeting those who are administratively in charge will introduce to the old hands all of the new hands that have been brought on board to fill spaces. Then we will be subjected to presentations of many different varieties and qualities, all in the name of preparing us for the new semester. They haven’t changed much in the 19 years I have been attending them, except for the events that follow them.
Back in the dark ages, when the College was under the governance of the school board and as it came under the control of the state, what follow the be back meeting was two or three rigorous days of registering students. At first it was the rigors of finding places to put 3500 – 4000 students. Then it was how to put students into on line courses. That has changed. This year, 2014 when we arrived at the be back meeting there were almost 8000 students already registered for classes. Registration begins for the fall in late March. Which means the challenge of this week is actually finding a class that students can enroll in.
So I am excited about what lies ahead. I am challenged by a new group of anxious students, whom I have to quickly calm down and get them to work.