APG-L ArchivesArchiver > APG > 2008-02 > 1204250958
Subject: Re: [APG] Mentoring
Date: Thu, 28 Feb 2008 20:09:18 -0600
Not that I would *ever* be annoyingly repetitive [???] BUT . . .
Have you thought about the fact that teachers MENTOR students by default? In
other words, when you are a student in a class of any kind, the teacher is
there to mentor you. Whether I teach at Samford, in a college classroom, at
a workshop, or online, each and every one of my students, if they're open to
it, receives my full attention (and some of them would probably say a little
more attention than they really want . . . especially those darling
twenty-somethings, who are history majors but don't know squat about
research or citation, and whose papers and submissions I return awash with
And you can truly believe me that I'm not teaching for the pay <g>. I do it
because I love to teach (maybe I just like to talk . . .).
And, ahem . . . in Akamai University's Genealogical Studies Program, your
instructor works with you one-on-one. That means they talk with you on the
phone, email with you, participate in Google Groups, and are basically
available and eager to answer all questions or to discuss all issues--not as
part of a class, but **individually**.
Moreover, at least in my classes, writing is always part of the course--so
the instructor reads your drafts, your research plans, your footnotes, your
paper . . . whatever you write, and makes comment and discussions and
recommendations. You get plenty of feedback.
And especially if your time is limited, a distance-learning process can be a
godsend, as you can do it when YOU have the time, even if it's at 3am in
Isn't this exactly what you want in a mentor/mentee relationship?
Note that not all courses are on the site yet; I'm constantly working to
find new instructors and new topics.
But even if Akamai's not for you, take a class at a local college; any
history, geography, anthropology, and related discipline will provide
courses in useful topics--even a writing course will be useful to enhance
your skill sets. Most colleges have classes in the evening, once a week--and
online--and on weekends only.
In my state, people over 60 can take classes for a $5 fee--basically free.
In my college classes, I not only have those innocent twenty-somethings that
have no idea what they're getting into with my classes that *sound* so
simple, but I have an equal number of people in their 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s,
and even 70s.
In other words, the teacher/student relationship is precisely what you are
seeking when you wish you had a mentor.
DISCLAIMER: Yes, I have a vested interest in Akamai <g>. I want students!
Carolyn Earle Billingsley, PhD
Director, Genealogical Studies Program, Akamai University
2100 Pleasant Grove, Alexander, AR 72002-9154
The central organizing principle in the discipline of
genealogy is the reconstruction and analysis of kinship.