Welcome to 2017.
2016 did not see me blogging. At least, I was not blogging on my personal blog. In fact, in the one instance that I did blog, it was on adoption-related issues and appeared on The Lost Daughters where I am a contributor. For those of you interested in my posts concerning adoption, please note that these posts will now be featured primarily on The Lost Daughters. Once I started blogging on that platform in 2015, I shared three essays before the year ended:
- “The Complexities of Transnational, Transracial Adoptee Identities” (November 23, 2015)
- “When Murder and Adoption Meet on #HTGAWM” (October 19, 2015)
- “#MyAsianAmericanStory and Why Adoptive Parents Should Care” (August 29, 2015)
As I reflect back on my lack of blogging last year, I am reminded of the challenges in public scholarship and balancing the commitments of scholarship, teaching, and service along with maintaining or attempting to maintain a balance of my personal and professional lives. In February, I signed an advanced contract for my first book project. The end of my second year resulted in a new administrative appointment to become the director of the Kutsche Office of Local History, which seeks to give voice to diverse communities through history via projects and partnerships with entities on-campus and in the broader West Michigan community. These two events resulted in a busy summer of manuscript revisions and transitioning into my new appointment, which officially started in August. Additionally, I continued to work on various pieces of academic scholarship throughout the year.
The everyday academic tasks related to my professional life were also shaped by my preparation for my third year review for contract renewal. With a binder due in January 2017—six days before my revised book manuscript—I used summer 2016 to plan and begin preparing my materials in advance. Having completed the Personnel Portfolio Workshop offered by the university in Summer 2015, I had a solid working draft of my integrative statement. This statement is meant to tell a narrative of my teaching, scholarship, and service—providing an overview of what I have accomplished in years one and two as well as the first half of year three. In February, I will post a more in depth essay exploring my tips for creating a stress-free binder for review and reflect on the things I wish I knew in advance. I spent the fall polishing my materials and binder, in order to spend winter break focusing exclusively on revisions for multiple projects in addition to preparing my book manuscript for it’s January deadline.
For those interested in what it means to be pre-tenure and in an administrative role, check back in April for a post discussing my lessons learned from my first months in my new position. I will also repost essays originally posted on Gazillion Voices as I was alerted that they are no longer available.
One of the things that I do really enjoy about this blog is that I am able to share what I’ve learned from conferences and meetings that I attend. Later this month, look out for a new post discussing my experiences at HILT in June 2016.
Hope you enjoyed this short update. And I look forward to blogging a whole lot more this year.