Sunday, June 4, 2017

Post 01: Introduction

I'm writing with you this term, so here's an introduction.

I've worked in education all of my professional life. I have a doctorate from the University of Miami in composition and rhetoric, and I expected to teach college English forever. However, life has a way of shifting. My first job in 1982 at a branch campus of the University of Houston shifted me into educational technology. I set up an academic support center and computerized it. This was back in the days before you could get a degree in computer science, so lots of different people were doing computers. I installed the computers in The Communication Center that I directed and networked them to the campus network. The World Wide Web did not exist then, so we used FTP and IRC to communicate with other users, but mostly, we used word processing to write papers. And yes, they were papers. We still printed everything to give to a teacher. As you may have noticed, I don't do that any more. We write documents, not papers.

I left the University of Houston for Mercer University to set up, computerize, and network another academic support center. Then I moved over to Wesleyan College here in Macon to become their Director of Information Technology. In 1995, I went to Monroe County (GA) Public Schools to build a county-wide network and put all their teachers, staff, and students on the Web. In short, I was full-time technology, which is why I use so much technology in all my classes now.

Though technology was my day job (I liked it and it paid more), I still really loved teaching English, so I always taught adjunct classes—mostly at Georgia College and State University. In 2011, I retired from the State of Georgia and took a full-time teaching job at a college in Florida. I didn't like the school much, so I won't mention its name, but I started looking for another position within six months, and in 2015,  Middle Georgia State University offered me a position teaching English. I took it, moved back into my Macon home, and here I am working with you.

That sums up my professional life, but I can give you a few personal facts: I'm married to a beautiful Bahamian woman, and we have two sons, both grown and gone. Six months ago, our youngest son gave us our first grandchild, a thoroughly lovable girl named Madeline, or Maddie, as most of the family is calling her. I am head-over-heels in love with her, and if you stand in one place too long, then I will bombard you with a thousand pictures. She's worth it.