The following post is not going to be sensible and I will try not to hold back everything I'm feeling right now. I just got out of my advising session for graduate school. It lasted ten minutes and it was the most pointless session that I have ever attended. My advisor, Rusty Todd, met with me for what was supposed to be a time to discuss my academic progress at the UT Austin School of Journalism. My expectations of such meeting were already below average considering that my previous advisor, Paula Pointdexter, and advising sessions have always been the most pointless, incoherent, unorganized, useless meetings that only further confuse my path to success at the school of journalism. I was right to be late because you know it was a ridiculous rendezvous.
"I don't know who you are or what your interests are so, I have no idea how to help you," should not be the words that come out of my advisor when I am about to reach my last semester. I am talking about the semester where I write my master's report and figure out the last two courses that can possibly impact the change I will or will not make in the world. What on earth are these people thinking? Oh, you know nothing because the most selfish and narrow minded people actually run the school. That has definitely been my experience and probably others too.
In previous advising sessions, all graduate schools that are following the same track of degree get stuck in one room listening to professors ramble on about the courses they offer or are trying to offer. These are not the most exciting of courses to hear about. This is also not a good representation of the most innovative thinkers that do teach at the school and what they have to offer. They ask the students that have already taken courses to share their experiences with the new students because you know they are the real experts. To make matters worse, if students want to ask about some courses offered and no one has an accurate description of such courses. The cop out the "advisors" take is "you can always email the professor and investigate if the course is right for you." I always think to myself "Uhmm...I thought that was what this advising session was for!" Everyone sits quietly and let's me ask the questions because you know I am the only one that is not afraid to really try to figure out all the requirements that should be met and what I want from the school in order to succeed. This is when things get further annoying because sometimes they are clueless about how to answer the questions and go around it. However, if they do know of something that you can and will do wrong they will let you know about it.
I was not able to go to the last one because I was at work but I did hear about how mediocre it all was later. The second years were asked to leave the room at some point. This was right after they were told that if they had no idea what they were writing and had not planned anything at all by now, that they was no way that they would graduate on time. Of course, there was no one to ask questions either.
I thought the whole point of having a new advisor was to make sure that students would have a better experience at the school from now on but nothing has really changed. I continue to hate the school and wish nothing more than to graduate as soon as possible. It has been a bittersweet experience to attend it. It has been exciting only because I have developed good relationships with my peers and have had the support me through thick and thin. Nevertheless, a majority of my experience attending the school has been very political and has driven me to extensive periods of depression and a lack of faith in humanity. I have plenty to say about professors who have no idea how to teach and their methods.