As school is starting back at Oklahoma State University it has been bittersweet to not be starting any fall classes. While it sparked a fun conversation between some of my friends from graduate school, it has become very real that we are starting our first school year as full time professionals. I’ve always loved working and typically had a hard time prioritizing my classwork over my jobs/assistantships because I loved them so much. I’m in a new role that I love equally as much but I’ve found myself missing the assigned reading and creative process of being in a class. This has challenged me to stay up to date by checking The Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside Higher Ed, as well as look up research articles about topics I’m interested in learning more about. With this, I’ve started assigning myself reading and a project to work towards for this fall semester.
Along with my “books for fun” list, I’d like t o read The First Amendment on Campus by Lee E. Bird, Mary Beth Mackin, & Saundra K. Schuster. I chose this book because Dr. Bird taught my higher ed law class at OSU and gave me the opportunity to be her intern for her last semester at OSU. Higher education laws and policies have become a passion of mine, so I’d like to read a few books to learn more about it.
As for a project, I realized this year that I serve a population of students in which a good percentage of them are heavily involved in Greek Life. This is an area that outside of class discussions, the participation of my friends & relatives, and general media, I don’t know much about. I have had students feel failed by the process, and I’ve had students love Greek Life and all of the opportunities it gave them. I’ve had fellow classmates pass away from the horrors of hazing, but I’ve seen my sister grow and become a leader because of Delta Zeta. It’s an area that I’d like to research. Specifically at OSU and our recruitment process, I would like to have a research study that measures the general self esteem of our female students who start the process. Ideally it would have surveys they’d take before the process starts, during the process, after bid day, and a few weeks into the semester. It would also be interesting to gain some qualitative information on why some students choose to leave the process and how that affects their self esteem. Another add on would be looking at the grades of students who went through recruitment at the end of the semester and comparing the overall to students who did not participate, as well as students who stayed vs. students who left.
To learn more about this area, I am looking into the research others have done and am trying to create an intense literature review this semester. Maybe if at the end I’m still interested I could use it to write a research proposal of sorts and see ask our Greek Life department if I’d be allowed to perform it. They might not, but I’m going to do some reading up on that area nonetheless. If anyone has any recommended articles or books, let me know! I’d love to learn more about this population of students.
I am a student affairs professional, an amateur chef, and an adventurer at heart.
Want an email every time I post? Click the Subscribe button below!