Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Confessions of a Teaching Assistant

Kelly Ferguson has written a terrific article about the life of the MFA Teaching Assistant. Please do check it out. -- TK

Like most hopeful writers applying to MFA programs across the country each year, I considered funding a priority. A series of "careers," ranging from enoki mushroom farmer to rock drummer, had given me plenty to write about, but no time to put words on paper and no room for debt. While I ultimately wanted two years during which to write—the top priority for any MFA student—I wanted to do so without piling up student loans. So, rather than fire off a loan application to Sallie Mae, I applied for a teaching assistantship at my graduate school of choice.


David E. Grim said...

I enjoyed this article. Reading about the challenges of teaching reaffirms my desire to teach.

Balancing writing with teaching presents interesting difficulties, it seems, although I'm skeptical of the notion that one will always come at the sacrifice of the other. This goes for everything in life, not just teaching. Everything is stacked against us, especially for those with families, jobs, and a livelihood to support. No matter what we're doing, we still have to make time to write, and having to teach while in an MFA program--in essence, having to work--would ideally help writers to learn how to balance their craft with outside demands. That in itself is one the greater talents.

Unknown said...

hang in there.

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