Oh, look, it’s been almost a month since I finished my England entries, and swore I’d start writing non-travel entries regularly again. Hahahahaha!!! My job has suddenly veered from Really Really Busy to Absolute Deadness, though, so I’ll take advantage of having pretty much nothing to do for the moment, and try to get back into the writing groove. Starting with an entry about my job, since we’ve had such major changes in the last half year or so. Being so busy with all those England entries, I’ve not really written about them.
The biggest change was the departure of Aggravation Receptionist back in late October. I wrote about it on Prosebox, but it was before OD rose from the dead. Long story short, she kept taking more and more and more days off despite not having days off to take, using what we were pretty sure were fake doctors appointments and physical therapy appointments, then when the dean spoke to her about it, she blew up at the dean and THEN she went to Human Resources, presumably to complain about the Dean being so mean by asking her to be more considerate of her coworkers and stop taking time she doesn’t have (she took it without pay and that is something that isn’t actually allowed by the university, so is yet another bafflement). This did not go as she had hoped, she told me and Mr. Organized and Miss Tattoo in an email that she was absolutely not supposed to have sent us, and then shortly after that she didn’t turn up for work at all one morning, and emailed the Dean’s assistant that she was taking short term leave.
It’s all even more complicated than that, but I don’t want to go into too much detail about it, as it’s bizarre work-related-HR-related-probably-confidential stuff. Suffice to say that the dean took the opportunity to revamp the office, hire a new assistant who would also be the receptionist, and give the original assistant another position that she preferred to being an assistant. So if AR ever did decide to come back after her leave (and we don’t expect she even would try that- the general feeling is that she was angling to go on disability) she wouldn’t be able to come back to this office. HR could place her in another job, since you can’t fire someone after giving them leave, but we’re done with her!! SO after 10 loooong years of listening to AR moan and languish and yak to her DramaFamily on the phone and watching her do nothing but play online and text her DramaFamily, it’s …. OVER. She’s gone! It’s like a huge weight lifted off all of us. So, yay for that!
And when the new person was hired to be the Dean’s Assistant/receptionist, all the receptionist stuff moved with her to several offices away from me, so no more ringing phones and no more people walking in that we have to deal with due to AR never being there. So that’s been wonderful too. Previously the receptionist desk – and AR – was right in front of my door so it was very noisy and distracting. This makes SO much more sense.
The other big thing that’s happened is not quite so thrilling, and I have been a little mad about it. Mr. Organized is now my boss instead of my equal. The Dean (who has only been here a little over a year now, hence the big changes) created a supervisory position for our group, and made him supervisor. I feel this is unfair on several levels, the main reason being that was supposed to be my role from years ago, but our previous dean said there was no way under the ASU ranking/jobs system to create a supervisory position in our area. I’m not sure how the new dean managed that, and I’m also not sure how she could just give it to Mr Organized since there’s supposed to be an interview process for any new jobs, even within a department. I don’t blame Mr. Organized at all – he was very emphatic that he didn’t ask for that and didn’t really want to do it. And he’s a great guy, he does a fantastic job and everyone likes him. AND he’s worked a lot more closely than I have with the dean and with the faculty. So I really do see why she would want him for the position, but it still ticks me off that it was done the way it was.
I’m also kind of relieved, since it’s a lot more work and headaches, and I doubt he’s making enough extra money for it to be worth the extra stress. But any extra money is good, and our retirement pay is based on our salary when we retire, so it kind of affects the future too. So that’s not good.
Oh, and I don’t think I ever mentioned that we have a new advisor position in our office, and the Dean DID want me to apply for that, which I decided I definitely would do. It involves working with the campus departmental advisors and keeping them informed of policies and training them (sorely needed- we have some seriously awful advisors) as well as working with specific students who were having issues – much of it things I already do and have a lot of knowledge about. Then we find out it requires a Masters degree, which I don’t have. I did take about nine hours of Masters classes years ago, but they were English classes. The dean thought that perhaps I could work on it while in the job, but unfortunately the position has to be in line with similar ones on campus (they are new positions across all the colleges) and they require a completed Masters in a related area. Like higher ed. SO basically even though I could easily have done it, and a lot of it involves things I’ve been doing for years, they ended up hiring someone else who comes to me to ask questions about how to do stuff all the time. That’s not annoying at all.
So, basically, I’m feeling a little over my job lately. This is added to the reorganization of our duties we did last fall, where we all three split up the students alphabetically, and process everything involved for each student in our section of the alphabet. In the past I mostly did senior checks and processed graduation audits for everybody (Mr Organized and I both did this, although I handled practically all the graduation applications start to finish). Now the two of us and Miss Tattoo do changes of major and new major declarations and process paperwork for adding and dropping courses and special courses and… OMG IT’S BORING. It makes sense, and all the other colleges on campus do it like this, but I was used to being in charge of my own Graduation Kingdom, and it’s been hard going from most of my work being interesting and varied, to 1/3 of it being interesting and varied and 2/3s being boring shit like changing majors in the system and sending forms to the registrar’s office.
I kind of feel like I’ve been demoted, all told, even though that’s not the case at all and the reorganization is something we all agreed on ages ago. But I didn’t realize how samey and boring so much of the work would be. I’ve actually had my eye on the job postings, but there really isn’t much else I’d be qualified for that’s not on the level I’m at now. I should have probably gotten a higher ed degree years ago, but it’s too late for that- the amount of time and effort and money involved would not ever balance out in a pay raise, not at this age, unless I want to work till I’m 70. Which I definitely don’t.
I’ve just never been ambitious, and never thought seriously about where my job could or should go. Now I’m kind of regretting that. Although if I was ambitious and had climbed the University Ladder, I’d probably be living in a constant state of massive stress and certainly wouldn’t have time to sit around making journal entries!
WELL, I didn’t mean for this to end up as a moaning session, and I don’t hate my job. It could be MUCH worse, as I well know from years of working in the College of Education. Overall this is a good job in a good department. I probably just need to delve into other things we could be doing here, and show some initiative in making what I do more interesting. Or I could just work on writing, which is what I am REALLY interested in, and always have been. Throw my energy into that! Actually, that would be good fodder for another entry here, and it’s time to go to lunch.