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Posts tagged ‘Public speaking’

This week is the start of Spring Semester 2017.  I am extremely happy to be back in the classroom.  But, I am also a little nervous.  I am going to be working full-time (40 hrs.) 8-5 on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday through Saturday.  I am off on Wednesday and Sunday.  The class that I am teaching is on Monday and Wednesday evening at 7:30-8:45.  The one great thing is that my junior college is expanding and has opened a satellite campus that is almost in my backyard– my commute time to school is now 10 minutes.

Wednesday was our first day of class since Monday was Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.  I may have mentioned this before but I am doing things totally different this semester.  Starting my new job back in August was beneficial to me because for the first 6 weeks I was back in the classroom.  I was reminded of what that environment is like and the struggles that you deal with as a student.  It caused me to re-think my approach to teaching and how I structure my course.  So, I did a total overhaul.  I want it to be less technical and focus more on giving the students lots of practice speaking in front of others– after all that is the main goal of the course.  I have taken out a good handful of chapters of assigned reading in favor of more hands-on type of activities.  And, those chapters will still be in the textbook for the students who want a deeper or broader knowledge base.  I’ll keep you posted and let you know how this new philosophy works out.

I went with what I consider to be a very “teacher” type of outfit— pencil skirt, cardigan, scarf, and round toe mary jane shoes.  My outfit was based on this pin here, albeit in a different color palette.  I liked the outfit well enough but I am not sure how flattering it is to my figure.  I think that the cardigan worn buttoned up like that looks boxy and a tad frumpy.  And, I thought that my hair looked better than I think it does in these photo’s.

Oh well, I guess.


Spring Semester 2016 is officially over and in the books!  Summer semester starts in about 3 weeks, but I am not scheduled to teach.  Although the idea of having the summer off is nice, I’ve done it the last 3 years and it is not all that it is cracked up to be.  The last 3 summers I worked more at my bartending job.  But, I left that job at the end of June last year after getting married.  It was nice to have the month of July to focus on adjusting to married life, planning our wedding party and honeymoon, and preparing for the Fall semester.

So, I am looking for work.  I am looking in to all avenues of work— part-time retail opportunities, bartending/serving gigs, full or part-time clerical/receptionist work, other colleges/universities, etc.  I am unsure about my long-term goals and this is making my job search a bit tricky.  I honestly don’t know if it is time to forego teaching and strike out in a new direction or just find something supplemental for the summer.  Sometimes I wish I had a crystal ball.

cartoon about not giving up

This cartoon represents how I feel.  My college just announced that they will be opening a new campus location in the city where I live.  That is a great outlook for the future!  It could mean that they will be hiring more full-time teachers, moving adjuncts up to full-time, or simply that there will be holes to fill from other full-time or adjuncts that might be moving around.  It represents great opportunity.  But, it won’t open for at least 24 months.

What do I do in the meantime?  I’m not in a position where I can just sit around crossing my fingers and hoping that I’ll be assigned classes for the next 6 semesters.  My three-year plan includes buying a house, starting a family, and upgrading my car.  And, I need income for those goals.  Plus, there are no guarantees that this new location would change anything for me.  I might be in the same predicament of worrying about whether or not I will have classes forever.  I have invested 4 years in to my teaching “career” and so I am reticent to walk away prematurely, but I am also worried about hanging on too long and missing out on other opportunities.

I would be happy to hear your thoughts and/or suggestions on what move you think I should make and why in the comments below.

On Wednesday, I had an in-person interview with a staffing agency to talk about my skills and qualifications and what I am looking for.  The woman who I met with was very honest and direct in describing the type of positions that they have—most of them are temp-to-hire.  And in turn, I was honest with her.  I really don’t know if I am looking for short-term or long-term employment.  What I would be willing to do for the Summer is different from the work that I would be looking for if I am starting a new career.  And, I could find out as late as two weeks before the start of Fall semester that they would have class(es) for me to teach.  I don’t have to accept them, of course, but that could be the way of things.

Above is my interview suit.  You may remember that it had been on my wish list for quite some time and my husband Santa brought it for my for Christmas.  It is a Calvin Klein suit in charcoal grey.  The blazer is two button and the pants are classic fit.  I had the pants professionally hemmed back in January so that it was ready to go.  The only other alteration that needed to be made was the sleeve length on the blazer.  Santa also gave me a white Calvin Klein sleeveless blouse to go with the suit and the matching grey skirt.  I have worn each of these pieces on the blog, before.

For my interview, I wanted to keep it very classic.  I wore the blazer, pants, and white shirt.  I kept the accessories very minimal with small silver hoop earrings, a silver and black bead necklace, silver watch, and wedding rings.  I was torn about adding a pin to the lapel.  I had two that I thought would look nice: a silver and black cat pin or a silver and teal peacock brooch.  I think that both of these are nice conversation starters because they represent two things that I love.  But, a part of my thought that they made the outfit too busy and were unnecessary.  In the end, I did end up wearing the cat pin.  It didn’t really seem to make a difference one way or the other, there were no conversations that centered on the brooch.  Lastly, I went with my new black t-strap heels, simple makeup and hair.

As much as I love the suit, I don’t love the pants.  There is just something about the way they fit that I don’t find flattering.  They seem very wide and make me feel short and stumpy.  After my meeting I looked online to see if there were other styles of Calvin Klein pants in the same shade of grey that would match my blazer.  There were only two that I could find: classic fit and modern fit.  Yesterday I went to Macy’s to try on the modern fit to see how they compared to the classic fit.  I liked the way they fit so I went ahead and bought them.  I need to try them on with the blazer and see how they look and figure out if they need altered.

I have another in-person interview coming up and I am trying to decide what to wear.  I know that I will be wearing my grey suit, but I’m not sure if I want to go with pants or the skirt.  Also, I have lots of options for the shirt that I wear underneath.  I think that I might employ some color psychology.  What do you think?


Wednesday was the same story as Tuesday— I had a long exam in the morning and then class in the afternoon.  It was my M/W student’s exam period so I dressed casual, again.

May 10, 2016 T (m)

Just as in the inspiration photo, I paired a striped shirt with a mustard yellow cardigan.  I wore dark wash jeans and accessorized with a tan belt and the same shoes I wore Tuesday!  I added a layered gold necklace and the same earrings from the day before: small circles with a white and gold chevron print.  Hey, if it isn’t broken. . .

My Wednesday morning students were more excited and in more of a jovial mood on our last day.  I think it has to do with the fact that their class was smaller and their speeches took 2 hours and my Tuesday exam was nearly 3 hours!

My afternoon class also delivered their speeches between Tuesday and Wednesday.  I did need to meet with them on Thursday to do the final wrap-up, though.  I think I mentioned before that Spring Semester 2016 is over.  I do need to post final grades and turn in my attendance records.  I will probably do that over the weekend or on Monday.  It is due by Wednesday of next week.


P.S.  Please check out my latest YouTube video: