By: Isaiah Silva
Students are usually the ones who pop into everyone’s minds when the word midterm comes up. Other words that may come up are: time management, stress, and sleep. On the other hand, professors go through he same time management, stress, and sleep deprivation.
Professor Ana Lourdes is an Assistant Professor in the Journalism & Mass Communications Department and is going nonstop all semester
“Well, I am a very busy person because in the morning I get up and I have my breakfast, I feed my dog and my cat and I do everything I need to do at home, then I drive here. I commute from El Paso everyday. I teach my classes,” Professor Cardenas said, “Then when I finish my classes I try to grade some of the assignments,”
Professor Cardenas went on to explain that she is teaching two classes, which entails grading and preparing materials for each class. She will also be teaching a mini-mester class that will begin next week.
In addition, she is on track to become tenured at the university, so she has a lot of research to do. She is also a freelance journalist and has stories that need to get written.
As if that isn’t enough, she is taking an online class. She is studying the US-Mexico border. The class is a yearlong.
“It’s a one year certificate. It’s a lot of work, so I have to watch a lot of videos. I have to read papers and write my own papers,” Professor Cardenas said.
Like students, Professor Cardenas needs to keep her time management skills as sharp as possible. When she returns home, she has to walk her dog and then prepare her classes for the next day.
“It’s really a busy, busy semester. You know every semester is busy. I try to organize my life, I create my compartments. From 8 to 2, I do this; from 9 to 10, I do this, and that’s it, I usually go to bed at like 11 or 12,” Professor Cardenas said.
When it comes to grading, Professor Cardenas deals with a lot of writing which can be time consuming. She said that she grades her assignments little by little in order to keep herself on track and keep her stress levels low.
“When I get an assignment I just start grading because otherwise it’s horrible when you accumulate those [assignments],” Cardenas said.
“For grading it really depends on the class. In the writing classes you spend a lot of time because of that. I mean you review the lead, the grammar, punctuation, AP Style, if the story makes sense, if the story doesn’t make sense, so then you have to write your comments and then send it back to the student,” Professor Cardenas said.
Professors have a lot on their plate even during spring break. Professor Cardenas will utilize her time to work as much as possible in order to alleviate some of the work that she has to get done before classes start up again.
“For this spring break, I have a lot of work. I have to prepare for an online class that I’m teaching for the first time, so it’s going to be a lot of work, and teaching an online class requires a different organization,” she said, “I have to write some stories and I’m trying to use this spring break to catch up with my research because I have been postponing some things that I need to do.”
The difficult thing now is choosing whether to push responsibilities to the side and have fun, or catch up on work in order to make things easier. For Professor Cardenas, she chooses to get ahead.