From Academia to an Independent how to get rid of ants in my house Nonprofit Arts Organization ARTS Blog

I worked on two of the nation’s largest college campuses for a grand total of thirteen how to get rid of ants in my house years. At the university of minnesota, I cut my teeth in residential life, in community arts programming, even working with a data collection group on a research how to get rid of ants in my house study. At arizona state university, I continued my work with residential life, only to migrate into teaching english and creative writing, and then managing and helping to grow phoenix’s largest community-oriented writing center.

Working in academia has its pluses and minuses. All summer long I enjoyed what amounted to a private how to get rid of ants in my house city, with restaurants empty at lunch time, wide sidewalks and quads free of pushing and shoving and how to get rid of ants in my house skateboarders, and on-campus services like the gym and library that seemed to how to get rid of ants in my house be waiting for me to command them into activity. It’s a stark contrast from the other nine months of how to get rid of ants in my house the year. Throughout the academic year, students swarm the campus like picnic ants. Waiting for starbucks was more excruciating than waiting for godot. And food in the union, when it was even available, was like revenge—always cold and never what you were expecting. On a given day, I was once told, the university of minnesota gathered 75,000 people, making it the fifth-largest city in the state.

I was frequently reminded of matthew mccaughnahey’s iconic line about high school students from dazed and how to get rid of ants in my house confused: “I keep getting older, but they stay the same age.” while that was a turn on for him, all it succeeded in doing for me was making me how to get rid of ants in my house feel old. Like codger-old.

Being a university employee is like being a bee in how to get rid of ants in my house a very busy hive. Everyone has their job to do, and many people are incapable of doing anything but that how to get rid of ants in my house job. It might not be an abuse of the metaphor to how to get rid of ants in my house say that many members of the university community think they, um, “excrete sweet and delicious honey.” aside from that, getting the bees to dance in any direction except their how to get rid of ants in my house most ingrained steps was an exercise in futility, so any given worker bee’s option was pretty much go with the flow or how to get rid of ants in my house get buzzin’ elsewhere. Big universities work for exactly this reason, though. And, after a while, I became very good at the dance.

Having a ferocious support network at your beck and call how to get rid of ants in my house doesn’t hurt either. Buildings full of finance people with green visors, buildings full of fundraiser with easy smiles, buildings full of IT wizards in black t-shirts with video game systems on them, even on-campus police made the university a world apart from the how to get rid of ants in my house rest of the city. Although the tall iron fence around arizona state university had how to get rid of ants in my house been torn down decades ago, there were still clear divisions between the world within and how to get rid of ants in my house the world outside.

In 2008, I left academia and took over leadership of an independent how to get rid of ants in my house nonprofit arts organization, the writer’s center. Instead of 50,000 employees, there were 9. Instead of acres of campus, we shared 12,000 square feet that included our administrative and programmatic space. The change in scale was lilliputian in its magnitude. Like gulliver on his travels, I felt enormous and completely devoid of the anonymity of how to get rid of ants in my house the university (which could be a tremendous frustration, but just as often a saving grace).

When our internet went down, we couldn’t just make a call now—someone had to crawl under the desk to jiggle the how to get rid of ants in my house wires. When envelopes needed stuffing for mass mailings, we couldn’t send them to mail services, we all gathered up our own band-aids and got to work. But where it took seven people to touch a piece how to get rid of ants in my house of paper to get a check cut, I was suddenly able to solve a crisis by writing how to get rid of ants in my house a check by hand and handing it to, say, the mailman who had just delivered $250 worth of returned mail from the big mailing.

Although I miss the warm blanket of support the university how to get rid of ants in my house offers, I wouldn’t trade it for the flexibility of the small organization how to get rid of ants in my house I’m with now. My staff and I can come together and create things, change things, respond to the economy in our community and act on how to get rid of ants in my house advice from our constituents without anyone spraining a wrist stamping how to get rid of ants in my house it with approvals. I don’t have to worry about whether or not I’m adhering to constantly fluctuating brand standards or using last how to get rid of ants in my house month’s logo. Everything we do, we do ourselves. It gives us a different kind of pride in our how to get rid of ants in my house work. If the university can seem eerily like star trek’s single-minded collective the borg, we are like the crew of the enterprise, boldly going where our organization has never gone before!

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