Thoughts on Life, Art, Photography, Technology, Teaching and Travel…..
I’m finding it hard to believe that I have about 3 days left before retiring from my college job after 31 years of teaching. Its difficult to fathom that so many years have gone by and I actually earned a viable pension from the state college system. I don’t like to say I’m retiring because I don’t plan to stop working. I will however have the time and energy to pursue my art, writing, photography, traveling and hopefully some volunteer mission work as well.
The thought of leaving my job is bittersweet. I must admit I have mixed feelings about leaving, although deep down inside I know its time to start a new chapter in my life…turn the page and start moving in a new direction. I’m not certain what that entails just yet, but I know I’m suppose to move on from this place and begin a new journey.
I feel as though I’ve touched many lives teaching art and photography over the years. I can honestly say there have been many students and colleagues at the college and around the state that have also touched and impacted mine.
Its been an amazing career journey and consider myself extremely lucky to have had so many exciting opportunities and learning experiences since leaving Long Island for the US Army in the early 70′s. Over the years I’ve meet some wonderful people and made many great friends who have contributed to my growth as an artist, photographer, teacher and eventually administrator for distance learning. Being the Distance Learning Director here at CCC has been a great challenge and incredible learning experience. Education has changed so rapidly over the years. The evolution and growth of distance learning has played a big role in the direction of education and will continue to be a major factor at all levels of teaching and learning.
It hit me this morning, just what a big change it is going to be waking up each day and not having to “show up” for work. It is a scary feeling so I decided to try to articulate it in words.
There are so many things in this life I want to explore before I’m too old to pursue them. This is a great opportunity that not everyone gets so I want to make the most out of it. I’m going to have to change old routines and develop new ones. Its going to feel weird at first not having to be at a given place every morning, but I think once I get used to it I am going to enjoy the freedom and flexibility to direct my creative energy towards things I want to do like start painting again working on that photo book I have been putting off.
Life is as exciting as you want to make it and I don’t look at retirement as an end – I see it as a new beginning and look forward to having more time to pursue those things that truly interest me like my own personal photography, making art and taking what I have learned in the past and applying these varied skill sets to my future.
I’ll be wrapping things up these next 3 days up at the college. I’m almost done packing my personal things and backing up all the files on my work computers. Yes…this entire process is bittersweet to say the least.
The next chapter is waiting to be written.