14 May 2010


I am finished! I submitted my students' grades on Monday at 8am and turned in my last essay at 3:30 when I went to listen to the last of our classes paper presentations. It is such a surreal feeling to be finished with classes. I have completed 39 doctoral credits in three years. That is an accomplishment, I just don't know how to feel about moving into the portion of school that is not controlled by deadlines. I am very worried about trying to complete the last phases of my program on a nice time line to be done by May of 2013.

I am setting a goal for myself to try and get one DQE book read a week this summer. My intention is complete as much of the reading this summer and write my exam this fall to submit for defense by Christmas. We have to write a paper based off a reading list, so it is a little different than most PhD programs I know.

Once that is complete I am hoping that with the research that I have started I could dig into my dissertation without much delay.

These are my plans, now it is God's time to laugh. :)

03 May 2010


Not in the Kitchen Anymore?: The Middle Class Intentions for the Milwaukee School of Trades for Girls

In 1909 the Milwaukee School of Trades for Girls opened its doors becoming the first public vocational high school for girls in the United States. While education historians have given treatment to vocational education, most examples and analysis has focused on males or the “boy problem” in education. There are few sources that examine the “girl problem” or even acknowledge that there may have been one. The reform of girls’ education to focus on house and home aligns with the Progressive Era movements to eliminate poverty. Using the words of the Milwaukee Public School Board, school documents, local newspapers, and the personal papers of Elizabeth Black Kander, one of the main activists for the school, this paper explores the intentions these people had in founding a public vocational high school for girls., Women’s vocational training at the Milwaukee School of Trades for Girls went beyond shaping citizens and workers in the middle-class image; it was about fashioning the future wives and mothers in the middle-class ideal.

24 April 2010


I cannot seem to concentrate on my school work. I have so many distractions, both fun and work related. I don't know which to focus on first. Most can be put off until this semester ends for me on May 10th. The trouble is that I don't want to focus on the one paper that I have to write to end my course work for my doctorate. I have 14 pages on paper, most of which are quotes from my primary sources with very little analysis or secondary literature to back up my weak/lacking analysis. I haven't touched the paper since Wednesday. I want to get it done, I just have no motivation. This is not good. I want to work on projects that I'm interested. This kind of bothers me for heading into the phase of exams and dissertation.

Part of this I think stems from the fact that in one class I am writing a paper about Girls' Tech's ideological origins and in my other class we are just talking about writing in general. I have this on top of teaching two different courses, my IT job, and developing four courses online. It's just a lot to keep jumping between.

However this fall I am teaching 4 different courses at 2 different schools. While I am looking forward to doing this, especially developing and teaching a course on gender and sex, I am a little nervous to do all of this and my It job while writing my qualifying exams (DQE). My goal is to read all of the books this summer, hardcore, and be ready to defend my DQE around Christmas. I want to fast track as much as I can this summer. I know it is a lot, but if I get it done now, I can be that much closer to getting those three little letters.

Happily, though, I was reimbursed for my trip to San Diego to present my co-authored paper. I had a nice break from reality and my husband came along for the ride. I love education conferences. They are so much more relaxed than the history conferences I have attended. I presented at a roundtable, which means that we just sat around and talked about the ideas in the paper. I can't stand listening to someone read directly from their paper for 15 minutes.

I think I have rambled enough for now. I hope to come back more often this summer, if only to complain about the DQE books that I am reading.

29 March 2010

Long Time Gone...

I will post more later, but this semester has been beyond crazy for me, and I have a bad case of senior-itis which is not making it any easier. I received this PhDComic the other day which more accurately describes both my job and my degree. Here is the link, since the photo would not load fo me: http://www.phdcomics.com/comics.php?n=1295

06 January 2010

I'm Back

I know it has been a while since I have written. I find I have so much to say, but no energy to write some days.

I survived my stats class with an A. I was so worried about this course, but it was all theory, and no math what so ever. I can memorize theory with the best of them. It made for an interesting course. It was made easier that the only other person from my program in there is a former math teacher.

On a happy note, I am 1-3 on proposals. The paper that I co-authored was accepted to be presented at a round table at a conference in San Diego. I get to spend a week in San Diego just as the Midwest is coming out of winter. I am looking forward to presenting the paper, as well as traveling. I hope that I can get some reimbursement from the university, but I know that travel budgets were one place where the university had to make cuts, rather than less financial assistance for studying.

Spring semester is starting to fill up already with projects. I am putting the finishing touches on my syllabus and preparing to order the books for my last two courses on my program. I am very much looking forward to my course work this semester, though slightly apprehensive in that I have not written an academic paper since the spring semester. Time to get back on the horse!

05 November 2009

0-2 So Far, But Spring is Looking Good

Well October was the month of proposals for me, and so far I am 0-2 with one still hanging out there in limbo. My proposal to teach the History of American Women was not accepted, and I am waiting to hear back from my chair to get some feedback. I told her I am in no rush, proposals for Fall 10 courses aren't due until February/March. The second proposal that I am still a little unhappy with was to spend a month teaching in Florence with a colleague of mine in the art history department. We worked our tails off to create a class down to the minute detail, but another thorough proposal was accepted. I was happy to see that it went to another pair that had a very clear aspect of what 4 weeks in Florence would entail. I think I wouldn't be as upset if I knew I would have a shot at wherever the location for summer 2011, but considering the hubby and I have put off having kids long enough, this was probably my last shot for the next 25 years to do something like this. I don't think he'll agree to me moving overseas for a month with a new born, maybe a small child, but we'll see. The last proposal that is hanging out there is to present a paper I co-authored at a conference in San Diego in March/April of 10. I would love to add that to my CV, but right now it seems like an after thought.

One good thing is that my spring semester is really falling into place. I have 2, count them, 1, 2 courses left to take in my program, and they are not being offered on the same day! I can actually finish my program without having to deal with trying to rearrange things like I was worried about for my current semester. As for teaching, I was only offered one course instead of two. I was a little upset with this at first until I remembered last spring I had the same offer. Our students don't take as many humanities/writing courses in the spring based on their schedules. I was able to pick up a second section days before the semester started. On the other hand spring means developing courses for our online summer group. I had two that were basically guaranteed for me. I went to the supervisor and selflessly offered myself up for a third course and she was thrilled! They have been trying to figure out how they were going to balance the courses with the handful of ID people that they use. Yeah me! This means, when I get the contracts, I will be a little bit a head monetarily this spring then I had anticipated. Spring should be interesting, and hopefully distract me for a while from trying to figure out what to do in the fall while writing my DQEs.