Friday, August 20, 2010

Being on the "dark side"

I led a very organized, very useful workshop for the entire faculty this week.  I spent over 20 hours preparing materials, and though I was nervous, I was really pleased with how well it went.  As a result of what my co-leader and I did, faculty paperwork is significantly reduced, support staff are ready to help with what remains, and a number of institutional goals are met at once.  Initial praises for the co-organizer and I were plentiful.

And I once again was gulled into thinking that everyone was pleased and impressed, but learned today that one faculty member chose to blog about his disdain for the workshop - and he has a strong following among our colleagues.  My supervisor let me know about it - and was right to do so - but I don't have the heart to read it.  Just hearing the one phrase from it -- "let the administrators go back to their fortress" -- stung more than it should.  For these 5 years I have fought to keep my office among the faculty I serve rather than on the distant administrative wing of another building;  I have fought every year to continue teaching every semester, so that I do not become removed from the heart of the institution and the daily work of a faculty member.  And still, I remain on the "dark side," as an administrator, apparently open to jabs from folks who don't talk to me in person, though we cross paths daily both at work and in the neighborhood.

It is situations like this that make me re-think christian higher education - if the believers act this way toward other believers, can the heathens be any worse?