New Year’s Goals Six Months In

I will be starting a new chapter in my life and a third career path on July 1, 2012 so it seems as good a time as any to take a look at the goals I established for myself in January and see where I’m at. But first, a little update on my major change. June 29th will be my last day at Minnesota State University, Mankato as the Director of Web Marketing. It has been an amazing opportunity and despite the sacrifices (living 120+ miles away from my husband during the week to only be home a couple of days just to start the cycle over again) it has been worth it. The people are amazing and the work has been rewarding. I came in with a lot of experience under my belt, but I learned much in the last two years. I also appreciate being recognized as an expert in my field and being given the freedom to exercise both my skills and my judgement. Once my tenure at Minnesota State Mankato is finished I will be a full-time PhD student at the University of Minnesota. My program doesn’t start until the Fall so I am going to try to relax and enjoy my two month break.

Three career paths you’re asking? Here’s the quick rundown:

Career path 1: Apparel/product designer (this is what my undergraduate degree is in)
Career path 2: Graphic/web designer
Career path 3: College professor (that’s the goal at least)

Goal Update:

Fitness Goals:

Run 500 miles in 2012. I have run 316 miles to date and I have six more months to go. This puts me comfortably over the half way point. I have realized that without a race to train for my miles have dwindled in June. The only race coming up on my calendar is the Scheels 5K in July. To start increasing my miles I’m thinking about creating a 30 day running challenge for myself. Stay tuned on this one.

Run an entire Half Marathon. The Earth Day Half Marathon that I ran in April was as close to running the entire 13.1 miles that I have come so far. I felt really strong up until about mile 10 when I had to stop and walk a bit. I ended up doing a run/walk combo for the next couple miles and then ran the final mile. All in all I did great. I achieved a personal record of 2:26. My previous halfs were 2:36 and 2:38 so I easily shaved off 10 minutes. While not the goal I was shooting for – of running the entire thing – I’m still pleased with my result. I’m going to try again this Fall. I just need to find a race.

Personal & Professional Goals

Get accepted into the Learning Technologies PhD program at the University of Minnesota. This goal came to fruition in January 2012. What else can I say? I’m extremely excited about starting classes in the Fall. I have already registered and am looking forward to the start of classes.

Receive an assistantship to fund my degree. Not only did I receive one assistantship, I received two. Okay, not as grand as it sounds. Between the two my tuition is covered and I qualify for the University’s health insurance plan. Both good things. My first assistantship is that of a Research Assistant where I am working with two professors and another assistant. This project has already started and will run through the entire school year. Talk about diving in head first. It’s already been a learning experience. My second assistantship will be as a Media Lab Assistant. I don’t know what the duties will be comprised of, but I’m looking forward to learning the ropes of that one too. It is because of these two positions that I am able to leave my position at Minnesota State Mankato and pursue my degree full-time.

Submit an article for publication. This one hasn’t happened yet, but I am coming close. I am presenting my research at an academic conference in October. I will be submitting my paper for publication in their journal. I’ll have to wait and see what happens. I am also hoping to clean up my Master’s thesis and prep it for publication during my time off in July and August. I will be submitting it to one of my thesis committee advisors for review and assistance finding a journal. And, while not a publication I will also be submitting my thesis for the Best Thesis competition at St. Cloud State University per the recommendation of my committee chair. He is the one to officially submit it, but he has asked me to remind him since he has been out of the country most of the year on sabbatical. And finally, I am hoping to have my conference registration fee waived by receiving the conferences Graduate Student Scholar Award. I will find out if I’ve been selected for this honor in July.

Lots of things have been happening in my life. It’s been a bit of a whirlwind and I’ve just been hanging on for the ride. I’m excited as to where I might finally land.

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