|My Beautiful Writing Group: Helping Each Other Stay Focused|
I recently violated one of the many deadly sins of dissertation writing: I started a new job! Forget about disarray, the dissertation process was at a complete standstill for a whole month while I got acclimated to my new role as Dean of Students and Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs. It was an opportunity of a lifetime that happened because of my dissertation and I could not pass it up. Yes, it's true. While gathering data for my dissertation on how race, ethnicity and gender impact the career path and aspirations of Latinas in mid-level administration in student affairs, I discovered some of my own self-imposed limited aspirations. These amazing 26 Latinas who participated in my study provided a much needed mirror for me that showed me how much I had been doubting my professional experience and not reaching for senior level leadership positions.
Despite having changed jobs during the dissertation process, thus somewhat delaying the process for me, I have no regrets. I love my new position and I am back on track with my writing thanks to three supportive Latinas and members of the Latinas Completing Doctoral Degree Facebook group, with whom I formed a writing group over the summer. We have all been encouraging, nudging and what I like to call, having chancleta moments to keep us motivated. (chancleta means sandal in Spanish and a form of parental discipline some of us in the group instantly recognized).
I am exactly where I need to be and I honored my research by taking action in my life because of it. I wouldn't have it any other way. My journey continues and I do see the light at the end of the tunnel with a bonus advancement in my career to boot!