Comm 101C M/W 9-10:15
Blog Post 2
Interviewing Patrick Kramer
I got together with Patrick Kramer who’s in the Communication Studies grad student program here at San Jose State. He’s currently a teaching assistant, but has course sections of COMM 20 that he teaches alone. I asked him a handful of questions about his career path and why he chose it. The questions I asked were:
1. What made you decide to become a COMM teacher here at SJSU?
I was interested in the Comm Graduate Program, and decided to apply. As part of that program, there is a program for graduate students to teach a section of Comm 20 as as part of their graduate work. I applied for that program and got accepted.
2. Do you see yourself doing this in the far future?
I do. I love what I do and especially love how I can fit it in with the rest of my schedule as I see fit. I really like empowering students to become better public speakers.
3. What was it that drew you to the communications department?
I liked how I could study music in a scholarly setting. Instead of being completely alienated from the subject I am studying, I get to study something I am already passionate about from a scholarly perspective.
4. What part of communication studies do you like the best?
I like being able to study what I am passionate about in a scholarly setting. I like being able to take established concepts and ideas and relate them to what is going on in the world around me.
5. What does being a college professor mean to you?
I am not a professor, but rather a teaching associate. To me, it means being able to have the opportunity to teach a class by myself and develop my teaching skills. I am the sole teacher in the classroom, but I have a large community of esteemed instructors helping me on a week-to week basis.
6. Is there a communication theory you really like? Why?
I like Dwight Conquergood’s performance studies theories. Lately, that is what I have been focusing on. I like it because it does not just apply to performance, but many aspects of performance of self.
Just as Patrick said he enjoys communication studies because it can be applied in real world situations, many of the theories we’ve been studying this semester can be as well. I think that his career can be described in the sense of Cultural Approach to Organizations theory, which involves personal, corporate, and collegial stories. Within Patrick’s class he has his own story for being there, just as all of the students in his class have stories as to why they are sitting in that class, whether it is because they are COMM majors and want to take a COMM 20 class to cover that GE or maybe it was the only class they could get so they are stuck in it. Either way they are there, together creating another story. This class could easily be identified as a communication class because of the cultural performance that occurs of writing and performing different styles of speeches.
They create their own organization, culture. They follow rituals in the class. It is a web of communication due to the number of students in his class. Although him being the instructor does give him power, which is also due to the relationship created by he and his students, but that’s a look at a whole other theory, the Critical Theory of Communication in Organizations.