Grad School: Year Two Begins

Here we are again, the first week of September; this time last year I was in the midst of GSLIS orientation, still unpacking in the dorm, and figuring out where to buy groceries. Today, I'm sitting here in my flat in Allston, having just come back from a grocery run at the Harvest Co-op, planning dinner for my roommate's return from vacation tomorrow and enjoying the creep of the afternoon sun across the hard-wood floors. Yep, a lot has happened in the past year. And now with a new semester beginning, I'm looking ahead to year two . . . the same, with changes.

Work and school will definitely keep me busy this fall. I have on the docket:

  • Classes. I am taking two classes this term, Reference Services (a library science requirement) and American Renaissance (a history seminar). I'm particularly looking forward to the history class, which focuses on the Boston-area transcendentalist set: Emerson, Alcott, Hawthorne, Mann . . . I plan to do my research paper on the trans-Atlantic exchange of ideas on pedagogy during the early 19th century.
  • Teaching Assistantship. I have been awarded a teaching assistantship with Steve Ortega, who teaches world history, and will be working with him on the World Civilizations I course for undergraduates. Simmons is a small enough school that I won't have a class of my own to lead, but have plans in the works to run some lessons over the course of the semester, including a workshop next week on using maps as historical sources.
  • Internship. After returning to Boston from Michigan a couple of weeks ago, I started an internship at Northeastern University's archives processing collections that have not yet been opened for research. This is something I don't get a chance to do at my regular job at the MHS, and I'm finding I enjoy the intellectual occupation it demands.
  • I'll also continue to work at the Mass. Historical Society part-time through the school year and look forward to occasionally taking advantage of its seminar series offerings and other events -- not to mention the kick-ass Christmas party the hold every year.
On the leisure side of things, I'm a firm believer in continuing to have a life while in graduate school. Since I now have an apartment with a fully functional kitchen and a roommate, this "life" thing means cooking meals, enjoying Tuesday night British Comedies with Hanna, Sunday strolls along the Charles (as long as the weather holds), and of course Thursday night episodes of a new season of The Office! Not to mention watching the political circus in the lead-up to November's election and posting regularly on my blog.

Happy fall, one and all . . .

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