On Friday, I found out my application for sabbatical for this Fall 2011 had been accepted. Those of you not in academia may not be properly impressed: this means I get 3 1/2 months to work on a project of my own design, and get full pay and benefits during that time. And I don't have to teach a single class or grade a single paper. It's fantastic, and I'm so excited I might throw up.
I know some non-fans of academia find sabbaticals offensive: the state, which pays much of my salary, is giving me paid time to do this work. I understand this concern. I welcome those people to come in and take my job for a semester, juggle the lies and cheating and broken hearts and addictions of my students, and put in 60 hour work weeks. In fact, they should do that for six years, and then see if maybe a semester to work on something else doesn't seem a little...um...necessary.
All right, mild bitterness aside, my project is to begin development on an articulation agreement with MSUM's Women Studies department. Essentially, though we don't really offer minors at our community college, the articulation agreement would help students achieve a minor in Women's Studies that would easily transfer to MSUM. Isn't that cool? Plus it shows we're committed to Women's Studies, and will hopefully help us someday open a Women's Center on campus.
Whew. Too technical? Anyhoo, I'm especially excited about this because, though I'm an English nerd at heart, when it comes down to it, Women's Studies courses impacted me more than almost any other classes. I love the idea of helping to offer that kind of stuff to students.
And I love the idea of a whole semester away from the classroom, mostly because it will be so fun to come back afterwards.
Who's up for a road trip with me this fall? I've got some sabbaticalizing to do.