Welcome to Chalk Players: A weekly teacher's view of the racing world (actually we don't play with chalk anymore, but use white boards...and I prefer longshots too!)
As director of the UA Race Track Industry Program, it is always interesting to interact with students pursuing a career in racing and keep up on the news in the industry.
I welcome your comments on the way! —Doug Reed
I hate to say it but every spring when this date comes I am happy. Finals are over and the end of a long semester is concluded.
A number of the RTIP students are going to graduation ceremonies today and tomorrow and others are on their way home for the summer or off for a summer internship. I believe students and faculty alike are welcoming the change of pace.
I will now begin planning my summer projects, some vacation, and of course we are working on Symposium planning.
May 3, 2013
The month of April was a blur and that was the reason I have not posted on this blog for quite a while.
I think the month of April is perhaps one of the two busiest months for me. Of course, the other is the month leading up to the Symposium. April is normally just as busy because I have a heavier teaching load and the courses I teach in the spring semester are loaded with large projects for the students and a greater number of assignments. With the major projects in my classes both due in April, it makes a tough month for students and faculty.
We have passed the half mile pole (spring break) and each spring semester is very busy for faculty and students. We tend to have a few more racing classes in the spring semester compared to the fall semester due to the work required for the symposium. The spring semester courses are also more projects oriented.
We also have guest speakers scheduled after we get at least a few weeks of the semester going.
Spring break is always quiet around campus and gives me some time to catch up on things mid-semester. This week was no different.
The two chores that took up most of my time this week were grading the budget project for students in Ans 441 and reviewing applications for the associate coordinator position. The search committee will meet next week.
It is the Friday before spring break. Almost everyone is in class today (I guess the few missing could not wait for a break?)
It is about this time each spring that the students now feel overloaded with tests and projects for most of their classes. I can tell you that most of the instructors are also ready for a slowdown from preparing projects, tests and grading them.
It was another busy week at the RTIP. The Peter Selin Memorial Happy Minute, as always was great fun Sunday. There were a number of alum and students at Rillito. Having an occasion for RTIP folks to gather at a racetrack is always special. Alum at Rillito included: Wendy Davis, Deb Fendenheim, Libbie Gabriel, Jon Hanson, Peter Parker, Richard Scheidt, and Scot Waterman. With no computer bettors in the crowd, I managed to grind out a $45 profit for the day too!
This week has been busy, fun and typical of mid-semester. It is highlighted by remembering and visiting with RTIP alum.
Sunday, February 24 will be the sixth annual Peter Selin Memorial appropriately called the "Happy Minute." I will start by thanking three alums: Richard Scheidt, Scot Waterman and Michael Costanzo for making the race possible through their race and purse sponsorship at Rillito Park.
As expected the racing office class did very well on their first test. I was pleased with the results but I did warn them that things get more technical moving forward. This week in that class we looked at race conditions, did examples of checking if horses were eligible for races and determining the weight allowances the horse was entitled to. We also talked about the rules and process of claiming a horse. It is interesting to recount how the rules of claiming have evolved over my lifetime.
The semester is in full swing and the workload has increased for everyone. This week was also the RTIP’s announcement of the opening of a job search for a new lecturer and associate coordinator.
This week at the RTIP was a pretty typical week. You can tell that the semester is progressing enough that the students are becoming busier with projects, homework and studies.