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Monday, November 27, 2006

working for a living

Why does Biostatprof do what biostatprof does? Because:

  1. I need to eat
    1. My family needs to eat
    2. The dog needs to eat
    3. The bird could get along without me
  2. Its fun.
    1. Really.
  3. I'm interested in what I do.
    1. Usually
  4. I'm good at it.
    1. When I do it
  5. People tell me I'm great.
    1. Not really, I made that up.
  6. I like working with students, i.e. mentoring
    1. I've been mentored so much in my life, its time to give some back.
    2. Besides, working with students is fun.
    3. Even when it hurts.
  7. I like teaching.
    1. At least the courses I'm good at.
    2. And teaching the material I know something about.
    3. The ones I've taught a long time, I actually get a good overview of what the material is, and I can recast it in a coherent framework.
      1. You read that entire bullet point?
    4. I wish students would rate me higher at the end.
  8. There is bureaucratic stuff to deal with as well.
    1. That isn't as fun.
    2. Committees.
    3. Faculty meetings.
    4. Committee meetings.
      1. In my committees, we never meet.
      2. What for?
      3. We can do it quicker if we don't meet, and we don't discuss it.
      4. And occasionally I can do it by myself.
      5. Though I'd rather have someone else do it.
      6. Natch.
  9. The U publishes over a dozen glossy and newsprint magazines and papers for me to read.
    1. I counted once.
    2. Between my school, the university, the fundraising, the advertising, the boasting, the news reporting, and the worrying, there is a lot to read.
    3. I toss as much as possible.
    4. I could waste days each month reading everything they publish.
    5. And then my alma mater sends me stuff too.
  10. Having good colleagues helps a lot.
    1. Good colleagues are where you find them.
    2. With email, you are not restricted to your local neighborhood colleague.
    3. Though its easier if they are not more than a few time zones away.
  11. Having a pleasing physical work environment really helps.
    1. I wish.
    2. Tear this building down, Mr. Gorbachev.
    3. And build me a new one.
    4. Current building is really ugly. Especially on the inside.
    5. Why can't academia buildings look nice?
    6. Are we required to be ascetic, just because we're academia?
  12. About research:
    1. Its gotten easier over time.
    2. Dealing with paper and grant referees is still hard.
    3. And painful.
    4. I have a plan.
      1. Seems to work for most any problem.
      2. I teach it to my students.
      3. They have a plan, too.
    5. Research should have gone much higher up than here
    6. At the bottom.
    7. but I forgot.
  13. Niiiccceeee!

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