It was a St. John’s English reunion today on the Writing Remix podcast, hosted by the USC Writing Program. All three speakers on the show hold SJU PhDs — Tara Bradway, the actor / teacher / writer / “Jill of all trades” who was today’s guest; co-host Danielle Lee, who is tenure-track faculty at SUNY Old Westbury, and Dan Dissinger, the longtime host and creator of the podcast who teaches at USC’s Writing Program.
Here’s the link:
Listening during my drive home today, and thinking about how inspiring I find their different routes into the choppy waters of post-PhD life, I was struck by how deeply fortunate I’ve been to have worked with all three of them, and how much each of them have taught me.
The road after the PhD can be rocky, and although I think all three students have warm feelings toward St. John’s, they also spoke compellingly about things they wish they had learned before arriving in their current positions as tenure trace, non-tenure track, and contingent faculty. The challenges of faculty politics, departmental and university service, and mental health needs of students (and ourselves!) weren’t things I taught alongside Shakespeare and literary theory when these students arrived in my classroom years ago – but I wonder now about how to integrate such topics into our curriculum and departmental culture. Obviously one way to do that would be to invite our distinguished alums back to campus for a visit!
I hope you enjoy this podcast as much as I did!