On Friday, I submitted my enormous portfolio to start the faculty promotion process. Academia is weird in that you have to apply to be promoted. The process is different at every University. At ours, we have to submit various forms along with a lot of supporting evidence as attachments.
The problem with this process is that all the forms - on top of not being updated in decades - are designed for teaching faculty. While we librarians teach, we are not teaching faculty. Therefore, the vast majority of our work products do not fit in this form. So, our workaround is to fill out as much of the form as we can PLUS add a narrative to cover everything else. The process of filling out the forms, writing the narrative, getting two letters of recommendation, updating my CV, and getting all the supporting evidence was frustrating and tedious. Plus, we had to do all of this while still doing our day-to-day jobs.
It was a HUGE pain in the ass and, this year, technology decided to throw one more hurdle in the way. Our packages were due on Friday BUT mid-Thursday, we lost access to all Microsoft products. Everything I needed resided in either OneDrive or my email... and I couldn't get to any of it. Luckily, we ended up back online by Friday and our (very kind) Director was open to a few days extension if we needed. I opted to put my nose to the grindstone and crank it out on Friday.
When I hit submit, I cheered and then got myself some chips and chocolate because it was too early for a beer.
As frustrating as the process is, all the aggravation is rewarding. I ended up with an 18 page narrative and over 150 pieces of sample evidence that showed everything I did since I was hired in 2018. Essentially, I have a portfolio of material literally stating how awesome I am. Plus, I got to see just how many students and faculty I've supported.
This process was made a touch easier because I went through it with two of my library colleagues. Plus, this hilariously named playlist provided the perfect jam set while I typed and downloaded.
Now, I just wait to find out the results...