Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Not-So-Light Summer Reading

If mid-March through mid-May was an intense extravaganza of activity, mid-May through mid-July will likely be an intense dearth of activity. With students in exams, no intense travel plans (at least not outside Romania), most of the post-Romania plans made that can be made at this point, and summer heat bringing a bit of lethargy, I pretty much will be taking a deep breath. And reading. I have great hopes to read a book every three days for the remainder of my time here, partly because I have a bunch of books to read that I likely won't have the time for once I start grad school. And partly to get myself in the mode of reading a lot. Why? Well for that we need a tangent.

I visited Columbia when I was home in the States for Bridgette's wedding, and I met with my advisor. Who is great. One of the questions I asked him was what kind of work we'll have- projects, papers, tests, group work, individual etc. To which he responded, "All of them. There's a huge variety. But I will say that compared to other professional degrees, the reading is extremely light. Not more than 400 pages a week."

Ok, did you catch that? Or did you read right over it?
Extremely light.
400 pages a week.

Those two are not synonymous in my mind. I literally had to refrain from getting big googly eyes at him when he said that. FOUR HUNDRED PAGES a week? And that is EXTREMELY light? Thank you for telling me now, because I would have had a major expectation explosion all up in my face if I hadn't been told that. I know a Masters is more intense than an undergrad degree, but hellllloooo reality. I kind of thought he must be joking about that being light compared to other degrees. But then I was telling this to a friend who is doing her PhD in Business at Harvard who told me that during her first semester for ONE of her courses, which met three times a week, she was expected to read 250 pages. That's 750 pages a week FOR ONE COURSE. So she had to learn how to read afresh. As in, learn how to pick up a 300 page book and in 2 hours figure out what it's about. Which you can't do if you're reading every word on every page. So. Looks like I'll be learning how to read again. Even for my "extremely light" Masters.

Back on track.
So I'll be reading a lot this summer. So get ready for a whole bunch of book reviews. And less crazy Spangles adventures. Unless you consider reading an adventure. Which I kind of do. So it's still kind of a Spangles adventure. In a way.

These reviews are helpful for me to (somewhat) concisely summarize books and what I think about them. They're by no means The Best Reviews Ever, nor is that my goal, but just my way of sharing a bit about what I'm reading and learning. Hope they're helpful for you!

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