Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Fruits of labor, or something equally pleasant

Some years ago, I began my first tenure-track position at a smallish private university in the midwest. I stayed for only one year, because I felt that I wasn't going to be able to, you know, follow my bliss and all. But I have to say that I had the chance to teach some really wonderful people while I was there, and I often still think of several of them and wonder how and what they're doing now that they have (no doubt) graduated.

Happily, one student, who took my Introduction to Rhetoric course, has stayed in touch over the years. And I just got a message from her, indicating that her bags are packed and she's heading west for Arizona, where she'll begin graduate work in Rhet-comp.

I feel almost misty-eyed. I'm so deeply pleased that over the years she stayed interested in rhetoric, as she took a couple of different jobs and went through some ups and downs in her personal life. She was thinking of applying to grad school when she was in my class, and she wrote her final paper for the course (on David Foster Wallace's "high style") with the idea that she would submit that paper as her writing sample. And last winter, after the passing of a number of years, she did indeed submit that paper as part of her application to graduate programs. And now she's off to Arizona.

I'm so proud. Like I told her, I can't wait to see her at CCCC, RSA, etc. Cool, cool, cool.

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