Friday, August 27, 2010

Coming up and what I'm doing this weekend

Get excited! Starting Monday, AGP will be featuring one super-parent each week in Avant Garde Parent of the Week. Mommies and daddies with children of all different ages will be highlighted for the wonderful job they do as a parent, as well as the many other hats they wear in their lives.

Do you know someone who deserves to be 'Avant Garde Parent of the Week?' Nominate someone (or yourself- no one's judging here) by leaving a comment or emailing me at deluna.jamie@gmail.com.

In other news...this weekend I'm filming my entry for this. It's the 2010 'Dance your PhD' contest. You literally dance out the story of your dissertation. AND, there are no entries in the social science category, so I felt it was my duty to represent. And husby has a film degree, so we're taking this seriously. We story boarded it.

What's a dissertation? And what was mine about? I'm glad you asked. Academics love talking about themselves. When you sign up to get your PhD (Permanent Head Damage), you have to take a bunch of classes and teach a bunch of classes and do a bunch of research. Then, the last thing you do is the dissertation. If you're in a science related field, this means you come up with an original research project, do it, and write about for 90+ pages. 

Mine was about attachmentmaternal sensitivity, and children's autonomy, which kind of means their independence. The dance of it will include the following: moving (and thus actually vacuuming under) the sofa so I will have somewhere to dance, me dressing like a toddler, and convincing my friends to dance some choreography while holding text books.

So, after you write your dissertation, you have to defend it, meaning you present it to the faculty and students and everyone asks you really hard questions and makes you sweat and cry. I'll have to write about my defense in another post, but I can tell you that it involved:

  1. Me panicking because my computer screen would not show up on the projector. I called Tech Services and they sent three people who correctly diagnosed the problem as a failure on my part to plug in the computer. 
  2. A student from the audience correctly answering a faculty member's question to which I first replied, "I am not sure what you're talking about."
  3. An outside chairperson (emcee/facilitator/faculty member from another department) who had a Rollie Fingers mustache and was hard of hearing, so he shouted all of his 759 questions at me (I'm still convinced that he was part an elaborate practical joke/sketch comedy bit of which I was the butt).
After all of that, I leave the room and the faculty vote on whether or not I get to be a thinking doctor. Then, Jeff Probst comes and gets me and tells me that the tribe has spoken. To be honest, when the tribe said, "Congratulations, Doctor," I almost replied, "Are you sure?" But I just smiled, thanked them, went home and ate an entire order of chips and queso AND two tacos from here and slept for 16 hours because I was exhausted.

I promise I'll post the dance video when it's finished. You promise me that you'll watch it and give me points for effort even if it's not good.


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