I was inspired talking to a man who inspired others. He spoke to me of many things, but one of the phrase that kept resonating in my mind is : the clear path.
The department /school needs to have a clear path. He said the head of department is very important.
What is happening to UM? UM is changing and I have been here since 1997. So when UM changes and when it does, do we have to change as well.
Suddenly UM leadership wants me to be a business-man type of researcher producing lots and lots of ISI journals. They don’t care how you do it, but must publish many many journals. Publish or perish they say!
What is my clear path?
If the clear path is not found in the school and university’s vision, and that it does not resonate with mine, should I quit?
I use to dabbled with activism and I did what others would also usually do, but now I have to come to a point where this is a crossroad of sorts.
Where am I going? Left? Right?North-east? South-west?
I chose to be an academic and tried to make it better for myself and my students. It is a journey of learning and keep on learning.
Often, what I discover, I share it with my students. I make it sense of it my own way and then interpret it to my students. At this point in time, I am making a clear path:
Write. Design. Teach. Publish.
In that order.
Write first because you need to read and then write. You can’t just write. But when you read, you ask questions, have a dialogue with yourself, write a blog, have a dialogue with others, and you keep on thinking.
You design after you write because writing (from reading and dialogue) gives you ideas. Then you sketch the ideas. You explore and see if your ideas work. Then you scheme and conceptualise.
You teach after you design because through your testing of your ideas, scheme and concept, you will know if it works. Actually students do all that drawing and scheming but if they teach there after or if they got the confidence to teach others, they will be much better.
Publish after teaching because then you want to spread the word around. You want to share the important things that you have learned.