This time of the semester it is easy to think our experiences at work are unique to us. Nod in silence if you have said or overheard a colleague recently say
“I am so busy.”
“There is so much grading.”
“I don’t think (person X) understands how much work I have.”
“Why do I get so many annoying emails from CELT?”
These things might all be true, but it is important to remember they are true for everyone. Your colleagues are stressed and busy, students are scrambling to finish projects and study for exams, your chair and dean are grappling with their own issues, and the administrative assistant you work with all the time is probably getting the worst of it from all sides. Ask yourself how you would treat people if everyone were as busy as you are, and then do that, because they probably are.
Related to this piece of advice, here are a few more for the end of the semester.
- You would probably advise your students to abstain from ranting about their employers or coworkers on social media so take your own advice and do the same. What is posted on twitter lives forever in the memory of the internet. Think about how the student you are venting about would feel if you read your facebook post aloud in front of them.
- Yes it is the end of the term and ridiculous excuses are a part of our lives, but they can also be true. People do get sick during finals week and people we care about do go to the hospital. The fact that students may have been untruthful before does not mean the student who is emailing you asking for an extension is lying.
- Do something nice for someone. Bring your class donuts or ask your administrative support person how his/her day is without immediately cutting them off to ask for a rush order copy job. Sometimes simple kindness gets us through the most challenging times.
- Looking for some help and a quiet place to grade during finals week? Check out the Faculty Grading Oasis in MLIB 458. We are open 8-5 with hot coffee, snacks, and student support to help alphabetize exams and data entry (as long as it is FERPA compliant). There may even be spontaneous “Hotline Bling” inspired dance-offs, you just never know.