My mind seems to have taken a ride on a Tilt-A-Whirl. Here I was, on the road to college graduation, having no concrete employment prospects or other involvements, and then, within one short conversation with my professor, I learned about a unique opportunity that turned the tables. At first, I was interested at a base level because my first goal after graduation was finding employment; I wanted meaningful employment but that was a want. One cannot be too picky when looking for entry level jobs for recent graduates in the mainstream public and private sector.
After expressing my interest in the position, my professor put me in contact with Constantine at Athens’ Own (AO), who was advertising the position. Constantine quickly got the ball rolling. I was somewhat surprised by Constantine’s pace, criticalness, and directness. I remind you that the exchanges detailed in my first log all occurred on a Sunday from 11 in the morning until after 11 at night. I had not encountered someone with such a personality. To me, it suggested a person with passion, an unmistakable drive, and high expectations. After getting a description of the available positions and surveying the AO website, I was hooked. Meaningful employment? Check. Professional and personal development? Check, check. A chance to apply my education, continue my education, and serve the community? Check, check, and check!
Fast forward to now, and I am inundated with questions and considerations about my general future and my future in relationship with AO. In corresponding with Constantine, I quickly realized that AO was a business like no other and offered unique opportunities I would not find elsewhere. Looking over the AO website pages and interns’ logs, I get the sense that working with AO requires a lot from a person in terms of time and energy among other things. This presents a conflict within me because I am eager to continue my journey with AO but know that I must not forget my educational responsibilities at Ohio University. I need to focus on academics to uphold a strong GPA and to graduate on time in April, this is something I cannot sacrifice on. This is not to say that anyone from AO has pressured me to set my academics aside, in fact, Constantine explicitly told me that I would be working at my own pace on anything AO related until after graduation. Nonetheless, my interest has been piqued and I find myself migrating back to the AO website from my studies to learn more.
For now, I will have to still my mind so I can bring my focus back to my four-year pursuit of a bachelor’s degree. A pursuit of so much more than a piece of paper, and yet, one that climaxes with one crossing a stage with great pomp and circumstance to accept a piece of paper.
Morning Paul, I look forward to your update to this entry.
A lot of water has passed under the bridge since I posted that blog.
My mind still seems to be on a tilt-a-whirl. I still have many questions about my general future and my future with AO, though most of the questions are different than the ones I had before. A common thread running through most of the ongoing thought-process changes and questions is communication.
The ongoing improvement of communication in my internship experience has led to many intense discussions and has highlighted the importance of common communication tools. One tool espoused by AO is Holistic Management (HM). I am still working on a working understanding of HM and hope that as I understand it better, communications will improve.
Paul, you mention above that needed time and energy were in conflict with the rigors of academics. With undergraduate studies no longer pulling you in other directions, what additional time or energy has opened up? How would you color your current availability in terms of time and energy compared to 4 months ago?
I would say that all the time and energy I was putting into school and employment previously has entered AO’s realm with the exception of some time devoted to occasional virtual work that I do in the evenings for Ohio University.
As for my current availability, aside from the 2-3 days a week that I am doing AO business, I have been mostly available to AO for the remaining 4-5 days.
In contrast to this, in my academic career, I was spending 6 days a week on studies and work. While I had less availability in general, my classes and work were at regular times each day, so I was able to predict my availability with a much greater level of certainty.