No GCC Love in San DiegoApr 4th, 2010 | By coop | Category: All About Me, Rants, Travel, Work
Well, I haven’t blogged in a while, so I’m just going to try and see if I can still do it. I went to the SITE (Society for Information Technology and Teacher Ed) conference last week. C was able to tag along since she can work from anywhere, and what better place to work from than San Diego in spring. So we hung out in the late afternoon and evenings, and I attended the conference sessions during the morning and afternoon.
There wasn’t much special about this conference. It was interesting, however, just a bit different from the usual conferences I attend. This one focused on teacher education and the use of technology in those programs. I’m not in teacher education, but most of the topics the sessions covered were relevant to regular education as well. I can say that I learned a few new things, but this was a bit of a stressful trip.
The biggest thing that stressed me out was being away from school for so long and not having internet access. Sure the conference had wifi and the hotel did as well, but my school doesn’t pay for internet access when on trips likes this. So basically that means as an online instructor, I have to cancel class for the week or pay out of my own pocket. $15 x 4 days = $60. On principle I refused to do that. If my college feels that not being in contact with the students and work for a whole week is the best solution, why not give it a shot.
Let me just say not answering an email (I get them on my phone) from a student is akin to just walking by someone in a grocery store who has just dropped a bunch of oranges. You just have to stop and help pick them up. Normally if I’m busy, I will just hold those emails until I get in front of a computer, but I had to answer on the phone or while I was at the conference since that is when I had wifi on my netbook. It was a pain in the butt. I couldn’t really concentrate on the sessions because I had a constant stream of email. I tried to ignore them, but I couldn’t. So much for me proving a point. I ended up losing all around on that deal. Stressed the whole first day and night I was there, and then eventually broke down and spent my own money on wifi access to work for two days. Skipped half a day of the conference to work the fourth day. Seems so pointless for the school to pays hundreds of dollars for me to attend a conference, but not pay for something as essential as wifi and parking.
Yeah, don’t get me started on parking. I spent $60 on shuttles and cabs, which the school will reimburse, instead of just parking at the airport for $24. That extra $36 could have paid for 2 days of internet in San Diego. Come on GCC. It’s 2010. We teach online and hybrid classes now. You pay for subs for regular teachers, but you make me pay to teach while I’m away? That’s so not fair.