Good morning everyone,
I hope that you are all well and getting a good start with the week and all things. As of January 2022 I am on sabbatical from my work at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Some of you may wonder, what does that entail?
Every seven years our tenured faculty members can request a sabbatical to work on a research project. Our university is in fact an R2 Carnegie Mellon Research institution and as such there is a big emphasis on investigation but to what end?
A university is not meant to merely bestow soundbites of knowledge and test the students at the end of the week. Higher education is supposed to be about innovation. Students come to develop and prepare to work on a particular profession or field however the mission lies far beyond that. We aim to provide students with the tools to continue learning through a life time. This means that education cannot be reactionary otherwise it becomes irrelevant.
Research keep us looking, finding new answers and building towards something better. It is a function that requires discipline and honesty. If the academic activity is to be an earnest one it must remaining current and at the helm of the latest advancements. In my case I cannot teach music performance if I don't perform. I cannot talk to my students about musical production if I do not produce nor if I don't understand the technology and logistical aspects involved. At its core research preserves the the soul of education by keeping engaged and seeking.
In the end all of these things are the means to the end which is to live in the best way possible. As for myself I am working on some projects for my sabbatical and looking forward to learn as much possible so upon my return I can do my upmost best for my students and our school.