I’m now an adjunct!

Last October, a professor in the business department at Diablo Valley College (DVC) asked me if I would apply to teach part-time in a new digital marketing certificate program.

It was an easy decision; of course I would.

I’d been volunteering at DVC since late 2018, speaking in classes and helping with pitch competitions. I met faculty and staff and got involved officially as an advisor to the business department and I also joined the newly-formed Diablo Valley Tech Initiative. I was enamored with DVC. I liked everything about it.

My history with this community college goes back further than 2018, actually. Much further. DVC to me was “DVC,” the place where my grandpa had his choir practice. It was the place where I would sit next to my aunt in the performing arts theater and watch my grandpa walk on stage with about thirty other septuagenarians and sing songs in languages I’d never heard before. I remember we always went at night, so my memories of DVC back then are dark. Not in a bad way, just in a late evening, not very bright way.

I wouldn’t see DVC in the broad daylight until I was in my mid-30s and living just over the hill from campus. One of my neighbors, a teenager, was performing in a community theater and his parents invited us to go with them. My daughter Lily was into dressing up and singing Disney songs at the time, so I knew she’d love to see some “real princesses” on stage. We parked in the same lot where my grandpa would pull up in his white Toyota pickup. We walked up the stairs to the same auditorium where he used to perform. We sat in the same seats.

It was deja vu, lifetimes apart. Here I was, all grown up with a daughter in hand, another napping at home, in the same place where I watched my grandpa perform decades earlier. He was recently gone, a victim of old age, and I couldn’t help but think of him as the teens and pre-teens on stage acted out scenes from Peter Pan. Indeed, life moves in circles.

I would get to know DVC much better, largely thanks to Professor Charlie Shi, who responded to a cold introduction of myself and the book I’d recently written. I detailed the rest in my original post about this position, so I’ll fast-forward to this latest news.

Yes, I got the job! It took a while for DVC to move on my application, but they verified my transcripts, spoke to my references, and interviewed me in May amidst the pandemic shutdowns. I learned a couple of weeks later that I was going to be permitted to teach, but also that nothing would be official until I was assigned a class. The summer passed and I learned just this month that I will be teaching Search Marketing (BUSMK-264) for two months between March and May 2021. I’m stoked!

The class was always going to be entirely online; it’s designed to accommodate both students and working professionals. I’ll give live lectures but they will be optional and I’ll record them. We’ll run the class using Canvas, a surprisingly intuitive LMS, or learning management system. I recently completed a course for DVC instructors to get familiar with Canvas and build out a couple of course modules. It was great; I actually feel very prepared now.

I was nervous about taking this on at first. I had to give DVC my current employer’s contact info as a reference, and I wanted to assure them that this wouldn’t conflict with my day job. I believed then, and am even more certain now, that teaching this course will make me better at my job. It will force me to look at search marketing (SEO, PPC / SEM) in a fresh way. I’m excited to force myself to become an expert in all aspects of this subject and infuse my course materials with my day-to-day work. It’s all very relevant and I can give “this is what I was actually working on today” types of real-world examples in my lessons. Rather than distract from my day job, this work will enhance it.

I’m an adjunct business professor at a community college! I’m really looking forward to it.

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