I wrote a reflection on my first semester of teaching and shared it with my students. An excerpt (I teach an intro research course):

Research is not only about validating and affirming what you already know in your gut, it’s about challenging your assumptions. Without research, I would think that more people had a college experience like mine (4 year, residential) instead of what is increasingly becoming the norm—switching out, stopping out, not finishing, etc. Without research, I would think that my excellent K-12 public education (not terribly validating, but academically rigorous and excellent) was common throughout the nation, but it’s not. Without research, I would think that all Asian Americans were like me and my siblings; instead, I know that more than 40% of Asian American college students are at community colleges. Without research…there are many things I would not know, and as a researcher, my joy and passion is to add to this diverse knowledge base, to challenge people to think in a different light, to ask weird questions and chase down the answers. I want my students to know that you don’t need a Ph.D. to do this, and I want them to have a value for inquiry and passion for lifelong learning.

Idealistic, but it’s nice to remind myself when I feel bogged down in some of the less fun parts of research/writing…which is often.


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