When I began my college education, I intended to be a teacher. What I came to realize is that I love being an historian; I still wanted to teach, but hadn’t a clue what that meant or what it would take to accomplish this goal. Leaving the safety of my undergraduate education, I embarked upon the long journey towards a Ph.D. in history. To many in the business of academia, I did everything wrong. I did not investigate graduate programs thoroughly. I did not get funding. I did not attend a top tier graduate program. It took me thirteen years to get a M.A. and Ph.D. I amassed a significant debt. After all this, I do not have a tenure track job and the prospects of getting one are slim to none. Do I regret my choices? Not one bit.
I am many things. I have taught history as an adjunct (and hope to teach again soon). I have worked as an assistant director of a program dedicated to church-related higher education. I am now a continuing lecturer at a four-year university. I am also a wife, Roman Catholic, a feminist, a dog-lover, an avid fan of bad TV movies, a daughter, a sister, a friend, and many other things. When I am asked what I do professionally, my first instinctual answer is: I am an historian. That is who I am amidst all these other things deep down to the root of who I am. I am an historian.