27 September 2021

Dear Everyone:   A huge note of appreciation with which to open this message, to Siraj Ahmed for producing a fantastic Open House on Friday, and Alessandra Occhiolini, Zoë Hu, Mitchell Wilson, Nancy Silverman, Amy Wan, and Duncan Faherty for making it fantastic! Thoughtful, generous, specific, deliberately designed to be helpful in detailed ways, not only what was presented but this manner represented collegiality at its best. Thank you all for the careful preparation and presentation, the time and effort, all of it! It’s exciting to think that among the people who attended, our future colleagues/students might have been present! On all our behalf, big thanks to all.    

Upcoming programming   Speaking of events sure to be helpful in detailed ways, please take note of the Orals Exam Workshop to be held this coming Friday! With thanks to Nancy Silverman for convening and organizing, here are the details!:

  Join us for this year’s Orals Workshop on Oct 1, 2PM.   A panel of students who recently took the exam plus a faculty member who has served as chair and committee member on many exams will discuss topics such as selecting the committee; list making/rationale writing/submitting the Orals Contract; preparing for the exam; the exam itself; if they had to do it all over what would they would change.   There will be plenty of times for your questions. Students in years 3 & 4 who have not yet taken the exam are strongly encouraged to attend. All are welcome to attend*. Zoom link: https://gc-cuny-edu.zoom.us/j/83591637381 (registration not required). Other events to look forward to this fall include:  

  • 8 October, Portfolio Showcase!
  • 22 October, lecture by Karla Cornejo Villavicencio!
  • 5 November, Spring 2022 Course Offerings Preview!

  More details on these and the other things in the works to follow, with thanks to the Friday Forum Committee for its efforts.

    Info to share   Also this week, a couple/several items to share, gathered from last week’s meeting of humanities and social sciences EOs with our dean, David Olan, and our provost, Steve Everett:  

  1. The Grad Center has not yet received a budget from CUNY Central, so we (our program) doesn’t yet know how much our allocation will be. It’s never all that much, and/but it is the fund out of which we would carve out even nominal honoraria for programming, and put toward some of our student fellowships, e.g., so does have an impact. We also don’t know when we will know about budget. It won’t surprise you, perhaps, that we’re not expecting the budget picture to be especially rosy – which I realize is a little like saying it’s a Monday given the regularity of our underfunded condition.
  1. Faculty colleagues, a reminder of this terrific resource! https://gconline.commons.gc.cuny.edu/carnegie-ed-tech-fellows/ (“The Carnegie Educational Technology Fellowship Program provides faculty with walk-in office hour support, intensive consultations, workshops, and other support services during the Spring and Fall 2021 semesters.”)
  1. Student colleagues, the GC has made the breakout rooms across from Proshansky available to you to use to attend or teach remote classes if you need to be in the building (for those who’ve never been in the building, Proshanky is a large lecture hall on the Concourse level – one below the ground/first floor) . If you’re in need of a landing spot separate from/additional to what Nancy Silverman’s already organized for you in English, please give a holler and I’ll help you figure out how to reserve.
  1. Everyone in the CUNY system should’ve gotten an email about the CUNY access pass. We’ve switched from Everbridge. If you haven’t gotten such a thing, please check your inboxes and if still no luck, you might want to ask your home college/department what gives. Everyone for whom the GC is home base, if you’ve not received your email, let me know and I’ll help you sort out access.
  1. It is possible to request and arrange for access to the GC for non-CUNY personnel. There’s a form that, we’re told, typically will take 8-10 days to process, and the prospective visitor must share contact and vaccination information and have a host CUNY person. If you want to bring someone into the GC, give a holler – but please for obvious reasons, don’t do casually – lots of people and process involved.
  1. Spring 22! We’ve gotten word that CUNY central would like us to have at least 70% of our course offerings to be in either in person or hyflex mode. The remaining may be hybrid or fully remote.  
  1. Students who were new last year, if you didn’t gain NY residency last year, please be sure to do so as soon as possible and by no later than 1 September 2022. On that date, if you still haven’t become a NY resident, you’ll be retroactively charged for this year in addition to next year as an out of state student. I’ll write to you separately about this, too.

Finally, for now…

Here, Nina Simone’s One September Day, which I’ve been listening to a lot lately and thought you might enjoy, too. I know September’s almost at a close, but we’ve just started the autumn season officially, so it feels to me still like September (and of course is for a few days more).  

This song for me has been looping as I’ve been thinking about my elder kid heading off to college and how astonishing and wonderful and magical it is that he will be meeting people now who will become lifelong comrades, but also how the start of every academic year is full of just that potential for all of us – to enter as strangers and discover and develop the entanglements that (will) come to matter so much in the years to come. One September day, we started school…one September day, prospective students attended an open house…one September day, I/you met/read/listened to/tasted/touched/drank/smelled/imbibed/reveled in/danced with…one September day, we listened to Nina Simone…Simone’s is an invitation to story, to poetry, to crafting the what will have been, to noticing, to cherishing, to love, to music  – my wish for you/us all on this September day!  

Abundant well wishes, Kandice

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