Reflecting on Being a Teacher’s Assistant

Wow! What a great experience it was being a T.A. for Dr. Judy’s prestigious class, Psychology of Human Intimacy at Columbia University Teacher’s College. Julia, Anna and I spent every Monday night for six weeks assisting Dr. Judy during her nearly four hour lecture class. Each week, I was shocked at how quickly the time went by. Dr. Judy sure has a knack for making education fun and interactive. Not only were her lectures fascinating, but there were always hands on activities in class, which encouraged various stages of intimacy between the classmates.

Julia, Anna and I divided the class into three different sections, and each took on a group of students. It was such a great learning experience noting the differences between undergraduate students, and graduate students. Many of the graduate students had stressful part-time jobs, families, husbands and wives, and a million other summer stresses. This made it difficult for several of the students to hand in their papers on time. It was interesting having to negotiate due dates among the students. It certainly taught me how to delegate, be firm and communicate efficiently.

One of my favorite memories of the Psychology of Human Intimacy class occurred on the last day of class.  All of the students assembled in a circle and  took hold of different spools of different colors of yarn and we tossed the yarn across the circle. The result was a beautiful rainbow colored web in which the students shared their favorite memories of the class. Many students shared that they were so pleased with how unified the class felt and how close many of the students had become with one another as a whole. I felt honored to be a part of such an inspiring and positive class.

Although challenging at times, I truly enjoyed my experience as  T.A. I learned so many valuable life lessons and I met a great group of students. It also gave me a wonderful sneak peak at what graduate school is like, which will be extremely helpful for my future. Working with Julia, Anna and Dr. Judy was as always a pleasure. This was definitely one of the best experiences I had as an intern for Dr. Judy this summer.


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