The Bug Geek

Insects. Doing Science. Other awesome, geeky stuff.

Tag Archives: funding applications



I’m applying for Teaching Assistant jobs right now (ok, not right now, but close enough). 

I’m starting to wish (not for the first time this year) that there was one universally-accepted form that could be submitted to the endless slew of people who need me to describe why I think I am teh awesome in 2000 words or less.  Plus publications.  And relevant work experience. And relevant coursework. 

I’m getting very good at application-filling-outing, but it’s time consuming.  Thank gawd for “cut and paste”. 

That said, it’s worth filling out just one more application (ha, I wish) in order to be granted the opportunity to shape and influence young, impressionable minds.  I wonder what class I’ll get…Evolution and Phylogeny? Wildlife Conservation? Population and Community Ecology? 

*rubs hands with great gloms of geekish glee* 


Random Digression: tonight I prepared roasted garlic-thyme butter as my contribution to a company potluck breakfast tomorrow (I was put on butter duty and subsequently informed by an ex-chef coworker that it would be totes lamesauce to simply show up with a block of plain butter, which was totes my original intention).  Having succumbed to peer pressure, I now have one beautiful roll of plain butter and one of fancy herbed butter ready to be sliced into artful discs for my coworkers’ consumption.  My assessment of this “herbed butter” thing: very tasty (and pretty!), but OMG labour-intensive.  And now I have a food processor to hand-wash.  I think I will pretend I don’t see it until tomorrow morning. 

The kind of teacher I want to be

I spoke with Dr. B yesterday…I have another grant to apply for (by Friday, eek!) It looks like I’ll be spending 6-8 weeks in the Place of Moving Water this summer, setting up field studies and also spending a fair bit of time liasing with the local people, and working on training/education opportunities for students there.

This is a really, really cool (and rare) opportunity; not only will I be engaging in buggy, geeky goodness in an extremely new type of environment (for me), I’ll also get a chance to immerse myself in the socio-ecological context of my project AND pad my training/teaching resume a bit.

Teaching is just as important to me as the research itself: I love it. There are few things more rewarding than making students care about something seemingly mundane…being able to help them see and appreciate the extreme awesomeness of nature, and being able to actually connect with students on that point…to send out enthusiasm and excitement about a topic, and receive it right back. To make them want to come back for more.

When I worked at The Large Nature Museum, there were a few times where I had a person or a family trail me litterally all afternoon, simply because they got hooked on what I was telling them and they wanted MORE. (And boy oh boy in a room full of dinosaurs and with the mouth on me I can keep an audience busy for HOURS if they’re willing.)

I’ve had the privilege of being taught by a few amazing teachers…people whose enthusiasm for their subject matter was positively infectuous. One in particular…I always swore that the man could be talking about pocket lint and I’d be positively enthralled. THAT’s the kind of teacher I want to be.

I really hope that I can live up to that and inspire some young people this summer.

Application Paranoia

The time between the printing of the grant application, and the delivering of it to the granting agency, is excrutiating.

Do I look it over for an eleventy-millionth time? Do I trust that I really have not forgotten anything? Can I rely on my editing and feel comfortable that I have not misspelled “insect” or “ecology” in there somewhere? Do I really come across as an intelligent human being? As someone deserving of a bunch of cash to do research?


I think I’ll look it over again (just one more time, honest).

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