December 29, 2010 13 Comments
I know it is really early to start thinking about summer. But the idle hands I’ve felt the past week has made me realize that I seriously need to make sure that I have a plan for this summer. Three months off – nothing to do – recipe for disaster! My idle hands won’t be able to contain my boredom. And my budget can’t afford a 3 month trip around South America like I’d like to do. ;)
My goals are to both occupy my time AND to earn some extra money to pay off my debt. So I’ve started coming up with some options, from more likely to least likely:
- Sit at home bored all summer. This seems the most likely if I don’t figure out some other plan for myself in the summer. Bonus: I have access to a pool just 1/2 a block away.
- Teach a summer class locally. In February I’ll start sending out emails to the local community colleges asking if they have any positions (click here to see how to get an adjunct position at a community college). I can offer a class at my school, but I have to get 7 students in it to be able to teach it. The chance of that happening is low from what other faculty members have told me. But not impossible. I can also see about helping with some of the adult education classes we offer. They fill up very quick and I have sat in the one I could help teach and know that I’m perfectly able to teach the science portion of that class. So there are quite a few options here that I’ll explore.
- Research position. I’ve had a few people offer to have me in their labs over the summer. One in Kansas – a quick half hour drive away. Another in Ohio (one of my collaborators that I’ve published two papers with so far). The last in Switzerland. These would be good career decision moves, but I’d likely not get paid. The would be mainly to develop projects for writing grants that we’d later get funding for – and thus I’d LATER get paid for. No immediate financial gain, but high potential for long term career growth. The last two (Ohio and Switzerland) would cost me quite a bit since I’d have to stay somewhere else, pay for travel expenses, and find something to do with the dog. But they’re still not terrible options. Also, Switzerland I’d be able to do some vacationing on the weekends and work with one of my close friends who is an Assistant Professor there. Two huge bonuses, even though not cost effective in the least.
- Grade AP exams. Thanks to the inspiration from TeacHer Finance on this one, I submitted my application to the AP testing center to be a grader for the Chemistry exam. My application was accepted for review, but that doesn’t mean I’ll be chosen to actually grade. If I do get selected I’ll spend June 12 – 18 in sunny Daytone, FL. I’d get my travel reimbursed and room and board for the time I was there. Also, a stipend – TeacHer got $1,200 for grading Human Geography.
- Random job. I could try for some random job in Kansas City over the summer. I could renew my life guarding certification. Work some retail gig for minimum. Something, oh something… Just to keep busy and give me a few extra bucks.
- Teaching position at a community college in another location. One way to vacation is to do a working vacation. I am thinking I could apply for an adjunct position at a school in a place where I would also like to vacation in my “off time” – I’m thinking Florida for scuba diving or California to stay with my friends for a while or even Connecticut to hang out with my dear friend Okturn Delmoniq. The salary I get for teaching would pay for my housing while I’m there and I can use my normal “living expenses” money to pay for touristy things. It would be a lot more difficult to get an adjunct position in a place I don’t live – but since I have contacts in San Diego already it wouldn’t be impossible there (I’ve taught at 4 different schools there already).
- Summer dive master position. I’ve mentioned on this blog that I’m a Dive Master. It is one of my passions and something that I wish I had more money to invest in to. I’d love to take 2-3 vacations a year dedicated to diving, but in recent years have only been able to manage a trip every other year. I could take this free summer opportunity to find myself a summer Dive Master position. This is essentially the same idea as getting a teaching position at a vacation destination, but I’d probably get paid less, work harder – AND get a great tan. Also, I’d get my fill of under water adventures which sounds pretty awesome to me.
- Plan and successfully execute a bank heist. With three months of non-stop planning I think I may be able to successfully find a way to rob a bank with no traces left behind. This is both profitable and will keep me occupied. Please understand – I’m fully joking about this. =)
So there are the options folks – I have a lot of avenues to pursue and will probably try all of them with an equal amount of gumption (with the exceptions of #1 and #8) to see which ones work out to be the best for me.
I talked with BF about a lot of these options today at lunch and he (of course) preferred the ones that involved me staying close. And while I would like to stay near just because it is CHEAPER and closer to him, that doesn’t mean that I feel exclusively like that’s what I want to do. He also commented that he had been thinking that if we did ever decide to have kids that he would definitely have to be the one to stay home with them since he doesn’t have issues going stir crazy like I do. He’s thinking about us having kids? How… cute?