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Monday, August 21, 2006

Research leaves and disengagement

First, thanks so much to the many guest prawfs who have been admirably diligent in keeping the conversation going during the dog days of August.

The new semester starts today at my law school, and the building is full of enthusiastic, nervous first-years.  I'm on a one-semester research leave, though (before leaving for a visit in the Spring), and am moving into an office outside the law school, in Notre Dame's Erasmus Institute.  My thinking is that this move, and the disengagement from law-school life that will, I assume, accompany the move, will make the leave more productive.

At the same time, I'm wrestling with the task of figuring out just how much disengagement I really want, or really should indulge.  What should I do about, say, faculty meetings, workshops, colloquia, and job talks, to say nothing of the various student-related events and activities that, ordinarily, I enjoy?  I do not want the first years -- or, for that matter, my own former students -- to be or become strangers.  I'd welcome advice from others who've dealt with the same or similar balancing challenges, or from anyone else.

Posted by Rick Garnett on August 21, 2006 at 11:35 AM in Life of Law Schools | Permalink


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