Friday, January 23, 2004

School Daze

A couple of years ago my company was looking for a schmoe to manage our company's internal library and archives. This department had basically been driven into the ground by budget cuts, and I think they were just looking for someone to sign the timesheets and not make waves. I was available, and over my halfhearted objection this got tacked onto my job description.

In the end, though, running the Archives has turned out to be one of the more interesting parts of my job. It definitely beats listening to users bitch about their laptops. As I've gotten more into this, I've realized how much I don't know about how to organize and preserve historical materials. So last year I applied for "employee grant" funding to attend two weeks of training at the National Archives. My request was approved, helped along by the fact that I could sponge off my parents and incur no hotel or meal expenses.

So now I'm in DC for about two weeks for the Modern Archives Institute. I'm looking forward to it.

To make things interesting, my assistant on the IT side of things is about to become a father, so he's likely to be out for a few weeks as well. That means our new part-time support person is running the show. It also means I'm probably going to be spending my afternoons on the phone after class lets out. Fun.

On a vaguely related note, I just signed up for the last class in my Technology Management degree. To mix things up a bit, I decided to take Societal Issues in Biotechnology. This ends my long history of avoiding classes in the natural sciences. But working with a biotech startup last semester got me more interested in this sort of thing. And the alternative was an E-Commerce class that probably would have bored me to tears. So this seemed like a good option -- we'll see how it goes.

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