Has it been only two days? Good lord, it feels like years.
My children spent the two weeks leading up to my first day on the job with back-to-back illnesses (Fifth Disease, then undiagnosed strep, then diagnosed strep) so I really crammed two weeks’ worth of organizing, prepping, errand-running, and TV watching into a single day on Tuesday.
I work from 9-4 right now doing training. I won’t start meeting with students until, ya know, they’re on campus, in about 2 weeks. Training amounts to reading, reading, reading, more reading, and meeting with other advisers to go over the details of the different majors in which I will be a “specialist.” It’s a motley crew of math sciences, scattershot liberal arts, and education majors. I have some familiarity with some of the programs, and some are completely new (and utterly foreign to me: can someone please tell me what “Spaces and Functions” mean to math people?). I thank my stars that I’ve been around long enough to know some of the general education stuff and to be familiar with a lot of policies. Even so, it’s overwhelming: I’ve covered about 5 majors with other “specialists” and probably have ten more, plus a ton of general reading about University policies/resources/etc to squeeze into a short amount of time before I’m supposed to give advice to students about how to make decisions.
It’s relatively quiet in the office because a lot of advisors use the break between orientations (summer) and new student meetings (first week of school) to take vacations. That’s made it nice and not too buzzy and chaotic. But everyone I meet reassures me that it’s normal to be overloaded with info, that no one expects me to remember everything, that asking questions is good, etc.
I’m going to shift to bullet points so I can actually post this before absolutely collapsing (at 9:30 pm — yesterday I went to bed at 8:45):
- I like it. So far, I really like it. I think I may be well-suited to this job.
- I keep having to go back! Every day! This is normal for working people but weird for grad school people where everything is once a week or every other day. I have to go back tomorrow!
- Advising is stuffed with grad school quittas. It’s like a quitta convention. Quittas are AWESOME.
- I can’t wait to see students! I’m terrified to answer their questions but I miss students.
- Time is precious and I definitely feel like I have much less of it, even though I’m not away that much more than I was as an adjunct.
- I love. Love. Love. Not bringing anything home with me.