April 9th, 2014 § § permalink
There is life beyond the academic community!
Spring Quarter can be an incredibly exciting time – your thesis starts to fall into place, you’ve got the most productive procrastination excuse ever in internship/externship/mentor apps, and it’s finally (finally!) warmer. But it can also be a scary time if (like most people emerging from a graduate program) you’re not totally sure what you want to be doing next year. Looking into those awesome internship, mentor, & externship opportunities is a great place to start, but if you’re feeling daunted or like you want to do some exploring before you commit, looking into volunteer opportunities may be the right choice for you.
Of course, even if you have an awesome sense of what you’d like to be up to next year, you may be feeling (as I did) at this point in the year that your life has been subsumed into the academy/library to the detriment of all things human. As the year winds down (hurtles toward completion?) it might be worth your time to look into volunteer opportunities. It’s incredibly valuable to make connections to organizations you’re passionate about, or alternatively, find out what kinds of work or organizations you don’t like now, as you go into the summer.
But what does this vague “volunteering” thing look like? How do you find the right organization for you, with the right time commitment? Answer: Volunteer Referrals! UCSC at the University of Chicago maintains an up-to-date, well-researched database of volunteer opportunities in Chicago, and they are happy to help match you with the right organization.
And, as always, come talk to your Mentors – about careers, the future, rad volunteer organizations in Chicago, your thesis, or literally anything else.
March 14th, 2014 § § permalink
Harper Memorial Library
For those prospective students planning on arriving early to Campus Days, MAPH has plenty of suggestions for ways to enjoy the city. » Read the rest of this entry «
March 13th, 2014 § § permalink
Welcome prospective MAPH students! As you may already know, MAPH’s Campus Days is coming up on April 6th and 7th. This two-day introduction to the program is a great way to get a feel for what it’s like to be a MAPH student: you will have the chance to mingle with current MAPHs, meet Alumni, visit courses, and, as is MAPH tradition, eat lots of food while engaging in a series of intellectual conversations (often centered around the opening film screening and subsequent panel discussion).
For those of you who weren’t able to house with a MAPH student, whether because placements fill up quickly on a first-come, first-serve basis, or because you’d simply like a different housing experience, MAPH has compiled some suggestions for alternative housing for the 6th & 7th.
» Read the rest of this entry «
March 3rd, 2014 § § permalink
In case you missed Jessi’s excellent post on AWP on AfterMAPH, MAPH’s Alumni blog, check out some highlights of AWP 2014 below:
“Find the place that scares you most and run to it.” — Eric McMillan (MAPH ‘10) on writing and, well, life
Talking Craft: (from left) Evan Stoner (’14), Hao Guang Tse (’14), Andy Tybout (’14), Chris Robinson (’14), Joel Calahan (’05, current preceptor), Eric McMillan (’10), Hilary Dobel (’09)
Last night, while leading eight current MAPH creative writers on an uphill March from the Seattle’s Washington State Convention Center to Von Trapp’s in Capitol Hill, I was marveling (aloud, perhaps unfortunately for my companions) about what going to the AWP conference can do for an aspiring writer. We were on our way to the second-ever MAPH/UChicago Alumni offsite reading at AWP. Earlier that morning, my colleague A-J Aronstein and I had stopped by a panel featuring the poet and teacher—and reader at last year’s offsite event—Shaindel Beers(MAPH ‘00) entitled the “Art of Difficulty.” Using beautiful language, Shaindel described teaching poetry students in prisons, schools, etc. as finding a way of “giving permission.” To write, one has to believe that they have something worth saying, a voice worth hearing. To Shaindel, it is a writing teacher’s job to nurture that belief, to create a space for it to thrive.
» Read the rest of this entry «
January 27th, 2014 § § permalink
You’ve mastered survival of the polar vortex, you’re well on your way to producing a real live thesis proposal and awkward prom-date-style asking an adviser, and you’ve got a cheering squad of MAPH staff to support you as Winter Quarter kicks in.
That said, Winter Quarter can really SUCK. It’s dark, cold, and you’re being asked to do an INSANE amount of reading/papers/job stuff/general being human type things. While it’s easy to feel like you have time for absolutely nothing besides thesis and school, it is essential this quarter to stay healthy and balanced.
It can be incredibly helpful to talk to someone who is not also immersed in thesising. Looking for a way to get something off your chest, or not sure if it would be useful to talk to someone on a regular basis? Student Counseling offers a Let’s Talk program, which offers walk-in meetings with a counselor. Student Counseling also has resources for academic struggles like procrastination or developing speed-reading skills.
And as always, if you feel like you need to see another human, are looking for someone to complain with, or just want to say hi, come by the MAPH office anytime.
2. Cozy up! (But in a new place)
At this point in the year, leaving Hyde Park (or even leaving the library!) can feel like a mini-vacation. Last year I set myself the goal of getting out of Hyde Park once a week, even if it was just to study in a new place. And while it may sound silly, those trips to distant coffee shops felt INCREDIBLE. It was like I realized that there was a great big world out there that wasn’t all thinking about (and possibly criticizing) my academic work. Also, Chicago is full of awesome places – it’s so worth your time to go check them out.
Some quick recommendations from Keri for coffee (at this point last year, I was consuming on average 6 caffeinated beverages a day, so I was starting to get picky): The Bourgeouis Pig (tip: they have a limit on Wifi, so bring your reading), Filter or The Wormhole (nerdy!) in Wicker Park, and for those who can’t leave Hyde Park, Bridgeport Coffee has a location in the Hyde Park Art Center
3. Sunshine (from the indoors!)
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a real thing, although I’m not totally sure if I have it. Regardless, staying inside all the time in the dark makes me sad, but there’s no way I’m getting outside for a jog when it’s -5 out. Luckily, there are ways to get sunshine (and a healthy dose of Mother Nature) while staying indoors:
-Garfield Park Conservatory - conveniently, MAPH is taking a trip to this lush and verdant (and free) place on 2/7
-Lincoln Park Conservatory – this slightly smaller conservatory is right next to the zoo (and is also free)
-and of course, the giant space dome / egg library that is Mansueto – less plants, more work, but very sunny regardless
4. Bring balance to the force (or to your own life)
You may have already discovered this, but it’s pretty much impossible to do all the reading for classes AND work on your thesis AND sleep AND be an actual human AND maintain friendships AND look for a job. And that is OKAY. It is more important to maintain your mental (and physical!) health than to finish all the readings. Do enough of your work to participate well in class, and then TAKE A BREAK.
While you’re at it, put a ban on guilt: set a (reasonable) to-do list, and once it’s done, allow yourself a guilt-free work-free break. Exercise, knit, spend time with friends, meditate, go to Tea & Pipes, watch TV, read a book that is actually not useful in any way toward your academic work, do whatever you need to in order to give your brain time off from school.
You got this.
January 6th, 2014 § § permalink
DO YOU ALREADY HAVE A JOB FOR NEXT YEAR? YES? OKAY, YOU CAN STOP READING THIS POST NOW.
WHAT? YOU DON’T HAVE A JOB YET? IT’S TIME TO START THINKING ABOUT ONE!
But it’s still winter! Surely I don’t have to think about the future yet!
You may remember a post on professionalization from last quarter which told you that you don’t have to worry about finding a job until Winter Quarter–well, it’s Winter Quarter now, which means: » Read the rest of this entry «
November 25th, 2013 § § permalink
On Friday, December 6th, from 6:00 – 8:00 pm,
join MAPH students and alumni for ARTBAR, an evening of socializing, drinks, live performance, and art activities at the
The evening will include:
- Hands on art-making in 2 of the following media: clay, screenprinting, and photography,
- An improv, pop-up, interactive comedy club performance put on by artists exhibiting work in the Michelle Grabner-curated “A Study in Midwestern Appropriation,”
- Drinks, snacks, and socializing, in the spirit of MAPH Social Hour,
- An introduction to the Hyde Park Art Center and its programs for MAPH alumni and students by the Art Center’s Marketing & Communications Manager and our very own MAPH alumna Brook Rosini (AM ’05),
- DJ and open mic,
- and time to explore the art galleries!
MAPH has covered all the costs for MAPH students and alumni, but please feel free to make additional donations to the Art Center!
Totally lost on how to get there from campus after precept? The East Shuttle from the library will get you straight there if you’re not up to walking!
November 8th, 2013 § § permalink
The editors of Colloquium invite you to the Third Issue Launch Party/First Birthday Party!
October 30th, 2013 § § permalink
I’m lost! What do I do with my degree in the Humanities? (Actually, a lot of different things.)
Remember that post that was all like “professionalization is important y’all!!”? Well, it’s already time for another one! In other words, in case you thought it was time to take a break from thinking about your future (besides, you know, the future that includes thesis reading and reading), the Alumni Panel is right around the corner!
The Alumni Panel is a great opportunity to actually think about what you might enjoy doing with your life, beyond just thinking about jobs/careers/please-let’s-not-call-them-[gap]-years/funding a PhD/your general happiness.
Be sure to come to
the ALUMNI CAREER PANEL next Wednesday, November 6th, at 5:30 pm
(here at MAPH Central)
it’s the perfect opportunity to:
meet alumni - ask about different career paths - and get
a taste for what kinds of jobs might (surprisingly!) suit you.
Not sure which panels to attend? Check out our helpful Career Quiz below! (It’s not really a quiz. Just a guide to things you like. Certifiably thesis-free.) » Read the rest of this entry «
October 10th, 2013 § § permalink
Searching the word “professionalize” in Google images leads to some pretty abstract, random stuff: mountains, schoolchildren, businessy-looking people in suits, even cats. Professionalization can often feel like a vague, abstract task–one that you’re unsure how to go about doing, but one that seems expected of you.
As in, MAPH expects it of you. A large part of MAPH’s work in developing better thinkers, writers, and humanists is helping students conquer the professional world–or at least, helping students look astutely at application materials, get a handle on job markets, and think about how the humanities work both within and outside of the academy.
Luckily, your journey into professionalism in MAPH doesn’t have to be confusing and daunting. In MAPH land, professionalization means developing your skills, experience, and connections, and being able to write and talk about those things in compelling and interesting ways.
Professionalization doesn’t have to be this creepy, I promise.
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE:
1. You are thinking of working after MAPH.
It takes an average of 3-6 months to get a job, sometimes longer depending on the industry. If you do the math, that means ideally you’ll start applying for jobs in Winter Quarter (you know, 2 months from now). Unfortunately, Winter Quarter is the busiest time of the MAPH year–3 classes, a thesis, IT’S SO COLD OUTSIDE. Getting your resume in shape now cannot possibly be a bad idea. » Read the rest of this entry «