Wednesday, September 18, 2019: The entire morning was taken up posting emails in readiness for the final exam board of the MA Fine Art schemes, on Friday, and the various meetings during Freshers’ Week. My intention had been to settle to a large admin task. We fritter our lives away in the multitude of minors. 2.00 pm: A late, celebratory lunch at a local eatery, concluding with delicious and rather delicate choux buns:
3.30 pm: Only now was I in sight of sufficient space to focus upon the task before me. It absorbed my attention into the early hours of the morning. 8.00 pm: Eventide:
Thursday, September 19, 2019: 5.00 am: At my desk, endeavouring to continue in the slog of doing something for which I’ve no prior experience and considerable reservations. The task had been set me; it’s not unconscionable; but the exercise requires me to make uncomfortable judgements.
8.30 am: This was going to be a bitty day in which my energies would be dispersed over many things in different places around the campus. And, furthermore, I was committed to pushing on with the exercise, and making preparations for a weekend conference, away. Each hour needed to count. First, I walked into town to make arrangements for tomorrow, before attending the final MA Fine Art assessment at the School:
Professor Peter Lloyd, our External Examiner, was ready for the off when I arrived. Throughout the day, he interviewed each of the exhibiters. Peter has a disarming and fully supportive approach to the task; the students (to my mind) are helped enormously by his observations.
11.00 am: A trip to the the Human Resources building, at the Science Park, to gather information about the state of my pension, etc. Mr Davies was, as ever, clear, well-informed, and insightful. There’s light at the end of the tunnel:
2.00 pm: I took the path upwards to heaven, passed the ‘Christofied’ National Library of Wales, to attend the annual, Faculty ‘State of the Nation’ address at the Edward Llwyd Building, on campus:
This is a science building. It recalls a hospital in the 1970s, crossed with the Natural History Museum and a school chemistry laboratory:
Each year we cover the same issues: National Student Survey, teaching strategy, admissions, recruitment, retention, and student well-being. The university is doing well in the context of the national picture in all these respects. But we can’t rest upon our laurels. Our position will be maintained only by the application of greater and more intelligent effort.
3.30 pm: On with preparations, email responses, and an endeavour to get down to meatier tasks. Into the evening, focussed on the same.