So the first week of April comes and goes with no news about the endowed chair proposals. I keep telling myself to be patient young grasshopper but all I want to do is …… well smooshing the grasshopper wouldn’t be nice so I will just remind you that I have the patience of a gnat. Got it? Good. Week two comes. Nothing happens on Monday and no one has said anything about a meeting this week. Ugh, looks like it will be another long week.
Uhhhh, Tuesday things got weird. I taught my 8:00 am class and was just starting my 9:30 class when the door opens and in walks one Vice President then the President of the College and then another Vice President…. At this point I am beginning to get a little nervous. I do teach outside of the box and can be a little crazy. I may have actually told my Dean at one point, that now that he had given me my own office he would have to pry me out of there if he ever wanted to get rid of me. I was freaking a little bit that he brought an army and I was about to be evicted. I think President Massey and Chairman of the Board, Conrado had a posse of more than 15 with them… eek! It took a minute but then I saw the flowers and the little blue chair that is given to those who are awarded Endowed Teaching Chairs!!! OMG, it was happening and I was surprised (which never happens) and shocked and thrilled and wanted to cry and wanted to call my husband and wanted to grab my students and celebrate BUT oh wait, I had to actually wait for him to tell me that I had received the honor…. Lol So that was the day that I knew the Institute for Cold Case Investigations at Indian River State College was about to become a real thing.
I was already on Cloud 9 and couldn’t imagine things getting any better but I couldn’t forget that we had the annual Campus Coalition Government Banquet coming up with lots of awards and recognition of hard work by students and faculty. I was holding my breath because my honors students worked so hard and wanted Club of the Year again but that another club was just as hungry and anxious. The Club of the Year is the last thing that gets announced. This would be one long dinner!
So as dinner moves along we are watching a year in review video and these students and their accomplishments over the past year are impressive. Awards start being called out and a few of my students win individual awards which were not expected. That was a proud mom moment. Have I mentioned how much I truly love these guys? Well I was kind of picking at my salad and praying that Alpha Phi Sigma would win but if they didn’t what was I going to say to them to let them know that I was proud of them and that they should be proud too when one of them poked me and was smiling. I was listening to the speaker as they started talking about the next award, Faculty of the Year. The professor did this. The professor did that. Somewhere in the accomplishments, it started to turn to my hearing blah blah blah because I realized she was talking about ME?!?! What the hell?!?!?!
This one was not on my radar. I was so focused on the club award that I didn’t think about this and I was riding high from getting my endowed chair. Honestly, I can’t even tell you how I felt because I was kind of numb. My husband nor son were there to share it with but that was ok because my second family was. I truly am close to my students and co-workers and they are a second family. One more time, I would just like to say I am honored and proud of this award because it starts with the students nominating you and ends by a panel making the selection. I love my job and my school.
So now not only was I physically exhausted from the 8 million events that my loveable psychos students participated in over the last couple of months but I was emotionally tired. I am super sentimental and when I am invested in something, I am all in. But we had one more award to go and it was the biggie. The CCG Treasurer gets up and starts this cryptic description about the group who has won the award. When I say that two groups of students were on pins and needs, I mean it was QUIET. A level of quiet a professor could only dream of in the classroom….lol And then finally the lightbulb goes on. The description of the club makes it clear who has won….. the members of the Pi Beta Iota Chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma have won Club of the Year two years in a row. Watching them walk up to the stage was bittersweet. I was so proud of their accomplishment but I also knew those who were present would graduate in a few short weeks and leave the nest. They have proven to be hard working individuals who’ve accomplished many things over the past year as a team and I know they will go on to accomplish just as much on their own. Best part, most of them keep in touch so I will get to celebrate them again and again as they move on.