Thursday, May 19, 2011

Renaissance, renewal, and roaming

I turned in grades this week for the spring semester, which means the semester officially ended.  My summer class begins on Saturday.  It's the circle of academia.

The students who took Innovation and Creativity taught me as much as I (may have) taught them. Their willingness to engage in the course, in the assignments, and in dialog with me was affirmation that I am where I need to be--in an environment where learning can happen.  It may not matter, in the final analysis, who is learning--it matters that learning occurs.  Perhaps learning begets learning...

For the students who said that the assignments themselves were a chore, but that writing about them wasn't, I am thankful; you got it.  To the students who wanted more guest speakers, I apologize.  For the many students who took risks they didn't want to take and wrote beautifully about their experiences, I am grateful.  It will be a privilege to teach this course again next Spring.

My summer course is another new one for me...and I will, again, be taking a risk, both with changes in content and in delivery.  I'm a bit anxious, pressed for time, and grateful for the semester I just had.  At this point, I'm almost ready for the Summer semester to begin, at least as far as the course plan, syllabus, and Day One lecture.  But I'd be lying if I said it was in the bag.

Seekers, by definition, never arrive.  Seekers journey.  And, when renewed, seekers roam to new places...and such is, indeed, the circle of academia.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Accounts receivable or accounts paid?

This is the last week of classes for the spring semester.  Students have mostly checked out, instructors are wondering why they assigned all the work that requires grading, and everyone is counting the days until the semester is over.

In the graduate-level Innovation and Creativity class, groups are making presentations about innovations within the industry they chose. Today, a group of six, all of whom are graduating with a Masters in Accountancy, almost brought tears to my eyes.  For their presentation on "An Accountant's Guide to Creativity," each student wore a white t-shirt with one of the following in simple black letters: 

  • Be Audit You Can Be
  • Nice Assets
  • It's Accrual World
  • Filing Single?
  • Straight Line Inebriation
  • Let's Get Fiscal
They were well-prepared, proud to be part of the accounting profession, and full of the confidence, hope, and promise associated with youth.  As a group, they took a risk, stepped outside the expectations associated with their profession, and lampooned the stereotypes about accountants (including a video of John great is that?).

They hit a home run.  They rocked.  They made me proud.  And the photo they took of themselves and sent to me after their presentation?  Looking at it makes me smile.