Obviously this is a little late, but comprehensive exams have a way of stealing whatever time you thought you had. I wanted to write a post that reflected on my time in Praxis, hopefully share a bit about what I am taking away, suggestions I have for future Praxis generations and an opportunity to share some general gratitude!
What I’m Taking Away
New level of computer/digital literacy: as I’ve mentioned in other blog posts, the way I frequently dealt with computer problems was to either cry, punch my computer, or take a nap. While I will miss these fantastic coping strategies, Praxis has actually made me someone that other people ask for help with their computers.
- Clearer sense of what my interest in digital and alt-ac careers might be: I have learned that I hate ruby and love CSS and design aspects of website development.
- Fuller understanding of what “digital humanities” actually is and how I might integrate it in my own work
- Excitement about alt-ac possibilities
- New network of friends and colleagues
Suggestions for Future Praxis
- Don’t put off the hard conversations–take on questions like what is our goal for this tool? What are the major things we want a user to get out of it? Tackle those early and just force yourself to sit in a room until you hammer them out
- Learn to love (or at least tolerate) conflict. As someone who has done a lot of “interdisciplinary” work in the past, that was never as hard (or rewarding) as it was in Praxis. It becomes a tricky balancing act of maintaining an awareness for what is useful/helpful for your discipline and what the tool might be separate from those disciplinary constraints.
- There really is no such thing as a stupid question
- The Scholars’ Lab team are beyond lovable so don’t be scared to ask lots of questions.
Thanks to everyone in the Scholars’ Lab faculty and staff who resisted the temptation to roll their eyes at my one millionth question about html and CSS formatting. Also thanks for helping me work through all of my insecurities about technology and not judging my borderline obsession with Honey Boo Boo.
Thanks to the Praxis team. I learned more about the practice of “interdisciplinarity” with you 5 than I have ever have. I also learned a lot about collegial and productive conflict from you all. it also affirmed my love of collaborative and team-based work and gave me hope that there are spaces within (or adjacent to) the academy that can be full of laughter and making mistakes openly.