I am an administrative assistant to professors.
1. My supervisor is a reluctant supervisor. Thus, I determine the how and the wherefores of my daily grind.
2. The faculty I work for are always grateful and think I’m amazing when I know stuff they don’t know or help them with things they have difficulty with such as technology.
3. Professors naturally have distinct, unique and much more free-spirited personalities, making it much more interesting to work with them, giving me the same freedom as well.
4. The strange imbalance between being the student of these professors and then also herding them like kittens is completely uncomfortable and hilarious. I was once placed in a situation where I was the “instructor” at mandatory faculty meeting, presenting a newly created web based organizational tool. Essentially, I was telling them what they needed to do and in what time frame.
5. The biggest perk of my job is that I get handed projects that I have no idea how to accomplish but I get to go figure it out and then complete the task. Once, I had to process all the data and compile the schedule for a big national meeting for a professor who was also the president of the organization which organized its annual meeting. I had a space of about a month in which to learn how to use Access, enter all the data into it and get it to spit out the report which was the schedule for the annual meeting. Today, I got handed a book to edit and put into copy-ready status, for publication. I was telling the professor that I have never really done such a thing. I watched him react in a start but I am guessing he doesn’t have too many alternatives.
It makes me giggle to think that I got this job through reference of a friend who worked here, who knew I couldn’t type worth a darn and my computer savvy was minimal. But I certainly know how to type now.