Today marks my fifth anniversary at my present museum. When I started five years ago, I was the oral historian. It’s been a bit of a rollercoaster since. While I knew I was hired under a grant, I did not realize that my job was a three-year position scheduled to end on this day in 2018. After the university fired my original boss for mismanagement/embezzlement in late 2017, my new interim boss came into my office and asked me if I knew that October 19, 2018, was supposed to be my last day. The news floored me, and I began scrambling to look for a new job. I had several interviews at some major oral history programs in Chicago, Oklahoma, and Stanford University, but none of them panned out.
Today is my first day at my new job. I’m very excited, and I’ve never been excited about a job before. I’ve always had jobs that were supposed to be temporary until a “real” job came along. (Little did I know that this job too was supposed to be temporary.) I went to graduate school, thinking I’d teach college. I’ve always loved teaching college, but I ended up teaching high school instead. If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you know the story.That was five years ago. I am now a professor at the university and a museum curator. I also earned my museum studies certification in the process. I would have never predicted any of that five years ago. I would have never thought that I’d be working from home on my five year anniversary. My how things have changed!
One thing though that I did when in graduate school was to diversify within the field of history. I covered military, Civil Rights, American, European, Women, and Native American history, as well as various research tools, such as language, oral history, public history, literary analysis, and art history. By doing so, I wanted to make myself marketable. While it has taken many more years than I expected for that strategy to pan out, it finally has. I landed a job in which I was uniquely qualified for because of my diversification, and while it is not a teaching job, it is a job that I am very happy with beginning.
So today is my first day. I’ll get the keys to my new office and get to work making this position mine and molding it as I see fit. I’ve basically been given free rein to make this position, and the program I’m taking over into what I know it can be. I Will Try to do my very best because that’s all we can do is try to do our very best.
Per Roderick’s request, here are some pictures of outside my old apartment: