Some people are going to study abroad (I know of a couple of students whose passports arrived just in time to get them to Costa Rica). Some have summer jobs. Some are lucky enough to actually recreate during summer. And then there’s summer school. As an English professor, two things I’ve come to dislike are (1) people saying “Oh, an English teacher! I’ll have to watch my grammar!”—because really, how rude would I have to be to correct their grammar in a social setting? and (2) people saying “Oh, a teacher! You get all summer free!” Anyone who says this just hasn’t thought about it much—but why would they? Of course, it could be worse. I could be a medical doctor instead of a Ph.D. and have people immediately start telling me about their mysterious ailments.

So what do I do all summer? It depends. This summer I’ll spend a week scoring AP-Literature essays, which will be a new experience for me. I’ll be revising my Arthurian Legends course to teach it as a summer M.Ed. class—again, something new. Also, during summer I usually revise course syllabi and/or prepare any new courses. This summer, the English dept. faculty will be working on some other projects as well. I’ll probably research papers I plan to present at conferences. And I believe there may be a weekend at the beach somewhere between June 1 and August 16.

Earlier in May, a Clemson professor gave her take on the subject of college professors and summer “vacation” in the Chronicle of Higher Education.