parens binubus

more than you want to know about a law school graduate/bar examinee who is also raising two children and doing her best at being a partner to her love.

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  • Wednesday, June 14, 2006
    Diversity
    This post really has nothing to do with my previous post about kids and race.

    I have shared my background on here plenty of times -- that which involves me praisin' jesus and running between chapel led by Jerry Falwell to church being preached by Jerry Falwell.

    well, at work the other day, we had a diversity training. we were given an exercise at one point wherein we split into groups of 3, and shared some main (but deeper than usual) points about our "identities."

    I went first, b/c no one else wanted to. I said that my culture/origins are Eastern European. I said that my religion was non-existent, but it used to be fundamental/born-again, and the change of that plays into my identity in a big way. I said that one thing about myself that makes me feel unique in the setting of the summer associate is my age, and my status as a mother (i'm the only one).

    Then a boy took his turn, and said something about his status as an older student and a married man. Then a girl [i call everyone boys and girls. eternal youth -- this is the fountain of it. Boys and Girls, thank you] said, "Zuska, mine will be very similar to yours" and I thought, "yeah, just b/c we're both white!!!" [we actually were all three white].

    but no. i was wrong. this girl is an ex-fundy. she went to a super fundy college. she is now an "agnostic" and is married to an atheist. She is out of her 20's.

    It was so weird, b/c while this diversity-diva is up there preaching to us, she's talking about ways in which we feel like we're the "only" - the only Black summer, the only mother, the only person from Georgia - and so on and so forth, and how that makes people feel. We are honestly in a firm that was historically the Harvard Club, and is working hard to shed that image and typecast, but I'd definitely call it slow going.

    I felt as if I had MANY ways in which I was an "only." The only ex-fundy, almost the only person from my school, the only divorcee, the only mother, the only almost-34-year-old, the only one who attended liberty university.

    but connecting with this person with such a similar background as mine was really surprising! the fact that we were there to learn about diversity, and randomly ended up in a group of 3 who found really odd connections with each other was also comical. In a not-laughing-out-loud kind of way.

    In other summer associate news .... a friend of mine decided to propose a gathering of those of us who are .... graying. i at first thought it was silly, weird, typecasting, boring. but in the week or so since it was first proposed, a lot more has dawned on me, and i have realized that this is probably the only way to connect with people who aren't out trolling for the firm credit card in order to carry it off to a bar for hours upon hours of slamming down drinks. Now i'm eager for the old summers to get together. we're going for coffee this friday. i'm even willing to share home brewed remedies for arthritis poultices. if it means i get a reprieve from the frat house that is perpetually trying to invade my newly acquired (temporarily) blackberry.
    posted by Zuska @ 9:39 PM  
    3 Comments:
    • At Thursday, June 15, 2006 2:04:00 PM, Blogger Yorick said…

      Hey, I saw that you had linked me on your blog- I'll return the favor.

      Has your summer associate position been as anonymouslawyer.blogspot describes it? He contends that the whole point of summer associate positions is to trick people to join the firm by letting them have fun all the time, not knowing that the actual workload is sheer hell once they graduate.

      You strike me as the type of person that can't stand not doing anything at work. I know the feeling. (Of course, I'm writing this at work, but it's at my lunch break.)

       
    • At Friday, June 16, 2006 6:52:00 AM, Blogger Zuska said…

      My summer associate experience is definitely different than the Anonymous Lawyer states .... there's no tricking involved. We're being spoiled, for certain, but we're also told that this is a once in a lifetime chance, and that when we return, we will be working like crazy. I have talked to people who have been through "sheer hell" with the workload, but it comes in spurts. It happens while there's a deal going on for corporate (which for some, who are "deal junkies," is all the time, but I hear that the junkies are SELF made, and not firm made), and when there's a deadline or trial (rare!) for the litigation department, etc.

      We are not being tricked, no. Enticed? Yes. Wooed? Definitely. But at least i am not being tricked. The supervisors assigned to me have been very candid with me, as I've asked them to be, mostly on account of my situation as a mother who needs to make a different kind of decision than the young 'uns I'm working with.

       
    • At Thursday, July 06, 2006 11:33:00 AM, Anonymous UIC Researchers said…

      Generational Differences in the Workplace?

      Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago’s Department of Communication are studying generational factors in the work place.

      Their online survey is quick, and painless and your participation will be highly appreciated.

      Your responses will be held in strictest confidence and not linked with your email address or other identifiers in anyway. Results will be reported only in aggregate form.

      As a benefit for participation, you can receive an advanced copy of the research report.

      To participate go to: http://surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=521692286660

      Please forward this message to as many people as you can who may have interest.

      Thank you very much

       
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