Saturday, June 02, 2007

Working at UNSW

It's a strange time to be working at UNSW. Last week, after spending the morning being oriented to UNSW and being told all about how UNSW Asia is a symbol of the University's commitment to the development of the Asia Pacific area, we all received an email from Grand Poo Bah Hilmer telling us that the whole thing's been called off. The following morning I sat down to my muesli facing a story on the front page of the Sydney Morning Herald that basically outlined the litany of woes faced by the University in the last 12 months - from the closure of its overseas campus to a building giving people cancer and a faculty unable to hire casual teaching staff. And I got kinda depressed - it wasn't the best day to be proudly striding into my new workplace home.

But then it hit me - does that mean I'm settling in? I got depressed because I identified with the University. There's always a time lag between when you start a new job and when you feel like you're a part of that company, and it seems I've gotten over that point. Cool.

And then there are the great bits of working there. The access to information - by golly, I can even get full text access to American Cheerleader! I got into a minor row with a friend who also works in the public service the other night about, well, working in the public service. I was recounting some guidance my boss had given me about how she wants us to be flexible and use discretion and take initiative. My friend has yet to believe that there is any such person in the public service, and perhaps her experienced cynicism will prove my naiveté wrong, but for the moment I'm chosing to be the wide-eyed, hope-filled sucker.

Oh, and I'm not sure if I mentioned, but a few weeks ago I bought me a new toy - my very own, very first laptop. My partner's work gave him one about 9 months ago and I kind of commandered it, and was converted. This desktop thing is for chumps! Why am I writing about this? Cos my grand new job lets me salary sacrifice my new toy and now I'm getting paid an extra $50 per week just from the reduction in tax! I have no idea how it works, I don't want to know, but I love it.

While I'm on the topic, when I got the new laptop I made the leap to Windows Vista, and the new Office suite. All my friends had nothing but bad things to say about Vista, which was interesting as none of them had actually used it or even knew anyone that had used it. And you know what? I like it. I like the little see-through windows. I like Mahjong Titans. I LOVE the automatic search window that comes up when you hit the Windows button. I like the contextual toolbar in Office programs. And most of all I love the feeling that for once I'm not the one left behind.

No comments: