Oh wow! It’s been awhile. It feels good to be back in this space…are you ready for a life update?…a lot has changed since we last talked.
2018 was the craziest year of my life (so far). I finished my PhD in May and officially became Dr. Fetter. I also was offered my dream job–a tenure track teaching professor position where I get to teach Nutrition 10 (the class that changed my life) at UC Davis (my treasured place). I couldn’t believe it–I literally cried.
2018 was also full of challenges–it was a difficult year. Figuring out what I was doing after the PhD was stressful…after going through a program for 5 years where I knew what was happening each year, the last year of the PhD felt similar to senior year of undergrad…what the heck am I doing after?! I put myself out there by networking and engaging in various professional development opportunities, applying to different job positions, and putting my application in the dietetic internship match pool. The uncertainty was real. If you’re going through something similar, please don’t hesitate to reach out, I’m happy to chat any time.
However, at the same time my long-term relationship ended and I went through the most painful break up to date. It was my biggest fear…and it took some time, but I realized it would be okay. Life goes on.
So what happened next? I finally made it to France last summer and ate all of the bread and cheese. It was a dream. I started teaching at the end of the summer and this year I have been working on mastering the class, developing my educational research program, and navigating life as a new faculty member. As hard as graduate school was at times, going through the ups and downs taught me so much and I am forever grateful for the learning experiences. If you’re currently a graduate student, there IS a life after school!! It really does get better–trust the process.
Now I sit here during our spring “break” planning out next quarter. I’ll be back in the lecture hall for the first time where I’ll be teaching Nutrition 10 face-to-face. I am excited, but also nervous. When revealing my nerves, my dad gave me some “treasured” advice: “Well, you’ve had some pretty bad professors, right? Just don’t be the worst one.”
But in all honesty this made me realize we all put too much pressure on ourselves. Of course I’m not going to be perfect! I’ll make mistakes (we all do). But I’ll also learn from the mistakes. I’ll improve. I’ll do better the next time. I’ll keep growing.
Whew. So that’s where I’m at. Any advice is much appreciated. What are some of the qualities of your favorite professors? What would you like to learn about nutrition? Outfit suggestions?
I also plan on using this space again to write about hot topics in nutrition, navigating life as a new professor, and my running adventures. Feel free to follow along :). See you next week.