I took a brief hiatus from blogging rather unintentionally as various tasks piled up and blogging seemed a guilty pleasure with homework, taxes, and a graduate school application staring me down.
- Homework. I am enrolled in a graduate class at the University of Minnesota Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs. The class is Leadership for the Common Good and taught by Gary DeCramer.
- Grad School. I am applying for graduate school at the HHH Institute in the Master of Public Affairs program.
- Taxes. What can I say. You gotta do ’em. I gotta do ’em. Some of us (me) have S-Corps or other types of business entities that require filing by March 15 which is four days away. Aack.
I also attended the F2C: Freedom to Connect conference earlier this week which was two intensive days of Internet policy talk. More on this later.
The class I’m taking is excellent and daunting. We explore leadership theory in a shared-power world. It takes a very critical view of old top-down hierarchical structures and emphasizes that leaders are everywhere. The authors of the text, Leadership for the Common Good: Tackling Public Problems in a Shared-Power World, Barbara C. Crosby and John M. Bryson, both teach at Humphrey and both have lectured to our class.
Of course, I had to add a blog component and the Gary, the teacher, was very supportive even though he had never blogged. (His first post was “My fingers are trembling.”) In fact, Gary decided to use blogging as a team leadership exercise. We divided into small groups and came up with recommendations relating to blogging policy for Fall Semester, 2007. I’ve posted some of the recommendations at the LCG blog. The one that every group came up with was privacy: posts should only be viewed by class members.
I’m doing a multi-author blog via the U of M UThink system. This is built on Movable Type and U would think there would be a rich text editor but damn, there isn’t. You bold something and there’s the raw code. The UThink Wiki lists an add-on editor called Xinha Here! (a Firefox plug-in) but this requires installation, possibly downloading Firefox, and the final interface is not the best as it overlays an editor on the text box in Movable Type. (The official Xinha site lists a version for IE. Maybe that would work?)
The grad school move is one I’ve been thinking about for two years. I work at the U of M so tuition is paid by the Regents Scholarship. I got stuck on the GRE requirement. The MPA at Humphrey does not require the GRE.
My long-term goal is to work on Internet and telcommunications policy. Maybe I would work in a nonprofit environment; maybe in government. Eventually, I want to teach—maybe at Humphrey.
The grad school application itself is a large task in itself. A statement, recommendations, a 10-year resume, all have to be completed by April 1. No fooling.