Lehman New Faculty Service Workshops: Creating Community through Sharing Experiences and Questions

Lehman’s new faculty workshops are bringing faculty together across disciplines to share their projects and questions in research, service, and teaching. Last week’s workshops focused on service, an area of academic life that counts towards promotion and tenure yet has few guidelines about what counts and how much is counted in review discussions.

We came together from a different perspective: what service do we do, inside and outside of our academic lives, and what makes that service meaningful? Each afternoon of the workshops, we explored these questions through partner and small group discussions, matrices, informal quizzes, and boardwork. All service activities were included: for example, academic and institutional committees, professional organizations, mentoring, consulting, and community service outside Lehman and CUNY.

The faculty who participated brought a wealth of experiences to the discussions. Human rights, the arts, fundraising for causes, support for survivors of domestic violence, work with children and adolescents, and technology training are a few of the outside service projects keeping our faculty active in their communities. Connecting these to committee work and professional organization memberships led to discussions of the ways in which service affects us as teachers and scholars and creates a different kind of community in our workspace.

The matrix and quiz can be found in the documents area of the blog. Take a look at the photostream from Flickr through the link on the announcements page: we laughed; we thought; we brainstormed.

Our April workshops will offer teaching activities and conversations to connect new faculty with what they do well and which strategies and approaches they can offer their peers.

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