Posted in College Teaching, Five Friday Happy Bringers

Five Friday Happy Bringers (6/22/12) — Retirement Edition

Yesterday, I retired from full time professorship at Georgia Southern University.  Here are five things about my retiring that make me happy/reflective.

1.  This cool plaque from CLASS (GSU’s College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences).

2.  Turning in my grades this morning.

3.  Enjoying the silly truthfulness of a message I posted on my Department of Writing and Linguistics listserv, when I announced my approaching retirement:  Ten Take-Aways from Being a Professor at Georgia Southern for Twenty-Four Years.

*  The student is more important than the subject being taught.

*  Listen to the student–she or he has a voice.

*  Newton (the ancient classroom building which houses my department) never changes.

*  Deans and department chairs do (pretty regularly)  (Okay, very regularly.)

*  The secretaries really run this place.  Be good to them.

*  How I arranged my classroom tables, what books I used, what my theoretical framework was (though important) paled in comparison to being in love with teaching young people (and some not-so-young people) and LIKING students.

*  Don’t grade everything.

*  At least once every week, tell your students something funny–about you, or them or whatever.

*  Take a walk around campus every now and then just to take in its natural beauty.

*  Don’t take yourself or your job too seriously.

4.  A fun saying-goodbye gathering with department members and other collegaues.

Tim Giles and Interim Department Chair Phyllis Dallas.

Mary Hadley, Thomas Klein and Tim.

Terri Welford and Interim Dean Curtis Ricker.

Interim Associate Provost Mike Smith (former CLASS Dean)

Laura Milner and Mary Marwitz

Fellow blogger Emma Bolden

Poet Extraordinaire Eric Nelson

Michael Pemberton and Angela Crow

5.  Realizing that being sad at leaving such wonderful colleagues and students proves the joy of having been a part of Georgia Southern University for so long.

Happiest of Weekends to You All!

4 thoughts on “Five Friday Happy Bringers (6/22/12) — Retirement Edition

  1. Maybe that horrible couch can be given a plaque and the ol’ heave-ho next. It looks like it has put in at least 24 years, too.


  2. Great one Neal! I really loved your 10 take-aways… especially the ones about listening to and liking students! So important, and so often neglected. Seeing the photos made me miss all you guys…


    1. Thanks, John. Okay, confession time: maybe I haven’t liked EVERY single, solitary one of my students over the past 24 years. One time I heard a girl tell another student before class that she didn’t like my loud shirt, and I still hold a grudge.


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