I have completed my dissertation defense, typed my dissertation and it has been uploaded and approved and ,now, all I have left to do is ‘walk’ at graduation. However, there is something very important left to do.
I have always felt that it is very important to thank all of those wonderful people who have been so very helpful along the way. There were times when completing my dissertation looked like a very dim light at the end of a very long tunnel; fortunately, I had a lot of ‘fairy godmothers’ cheering me along. So, I wanted to find something very special to show my appreciation, so I consulted a few family ‘experts.’ My sister Kristin, statistician and fellow researcher along with my mother quickly suggested ‘COFFEE!’ and I had to agree. Our life is nothing, if it isn’t about coffee! Our favorite coffee in my family comes from the island of Kona and it is truly wonderfully delicious. Pele Plantation makes you feel like you are actually there eating chocolate covered Macadamia nuts, rubbing your bare feet in the volcanic soil and sipping on a hot cup of Joe! Pele Plantation is expensive because they had to fly it to me in Tennessee, but it is worth it!
The accompanying gift was a bit more challenging.
As a young person I would always give a coffee mug to my teachers or friends as a sincere way to thank them for their support and maybe they might remember me when they used it. However, this time, I wanted to do something very special. Although I was in the middle of my dissertation process, I attempted to look around and found nothing acceptable, so I went back to my ‘other consultant’ , my father. Dad eventually discovered a wonderful potter (MugRevolution.com) who still makes everything by hand in his small studio and sent me a link so that I could find something I liked. As you can see in the picture above, they turned out beautifully.
In the changing often turbulent world ahead, we will need more collaboration and more transdisciplinary approaches to solving the challenges of the day. In this new environment, building the right team will always make the difference between success and failure, even in finding a ‘perfect’ way to say thank you requires many experts!
I would like to again thank all of my ‘experts’ within the University of Tennessee and those without.