Post CRDM posts: Dr. Pepper

Dr. Pepper's officeCan you tell us a bit about where you are now and what you’re doing?

I am now in my second year on the tenure-track as an assistant professor in the Department of Communication, Media, and Theatre at Northeastern Illinois University. I teach graduate and undergraduate courses such as Media and Cultural Studies, Seminar in New Media, Gender and Media, Mass Media and Society, and The Art of Film and Video. I am on the graduate committee in our department, and I served on two university committees: one was a hiring committee and the other was to review our transition from one Learning Management System to another.

What is the biggest difference between the last year of CRDM and the first year with a job?

In my first two years, I helped with curricular development, new course designs, and searches for new hires. It was sometimes such a strange feeling to think that only months before, I was a graduate student. Sometimes you are given very little time to transition from being a student to being faculty, so you have to just jump right in and not feel like an impostor.

What is one thing you wish you’d known when you were a CRDM student preparing for the job market?

The amount of time and effort that a nation-wide job search takes. Cast your net very wide and don’t skip the job postings that only “sort of” relate to your work. There is sometimes a huge difference between what the posting asks for and what the department is really looking for. You might be a great fit for a department even if you don’t think you fit the job posting. One more application can’t hurt!

What is one piece of advice you’d give CRDM students in preparation for their first year out?

Prepare to spend a lot more time on campus. In my case, I spent a lot of time in department meetings, committee meetings, and advising meetings with students in addition to my classes and office hours.
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