Friday, July 17, 2009
Over a year ago I realized teaching as a career wasn’t going to work out for me. I started to look into other options. But really, there’s nothing to compare to teaching at the college level for autonomy, creativity, and compensation. Not to mention the respect other people have for college professors.
Earlier this year my private college let me go, along with most of their other part-time teachers. Now the State of California is finishing us off. My normal teaching load was 4-5 classes per semester/quarter, or about 250 students. This fall I’m down to a three-hour-per-week art history lecture. Possibly one other short course through an adult ed program.
Those 200 students I won’t have in my classroom will be out of luck, because we adjuncts are not being replaced. I’m hoping this is where the public will be outraged, because these are not the poor or elderly who are affected, but the average taxpayer and his kid. I have an art historian friend who lost both of her upper division Renaissance classes. That means anyone trying to finish an art history degree won’t be able to, as the classes required no longer exist.
Anyway, it’s amazing that, though I knew the destruction of my career in education would happen, I’m still shell shocked. It’s like when you expect someone you love to die, you prepare for it, but when they do, you still can’t believe it, and your mourning is no less intense.
Well, life is short, we shouldn’t waste it, right?
A fitting masterwork, and one that continues to disturb: Giacometti’s “Woman with her Throat Cut,” 1932 at MOMA