Tuesday, September 30, 2014

We <3 Students!

Lu Loves Organic Chemistry

As September draws to a close, I’m inspired to reflect on the past month of working in Austin and how fortunate I have been.

Some of you may recall that my partner Paul and I relocated to Austin in August 2014.  We moved without “real jobs.”  Instead, our intention was to tutor full-time and make a living as freelancers.  We didn’t know how that plan would play out in the real marketplace; we just hoped that enough students would find us to make our lifestyle viable.

Paul and I had different ideas for our businesses.  Paul wanted to move his tutoring on-line so that he could continue to work with Texas A&M University students.  I planned to do a combination of in-person and on-line tutoring, working with students in the medium that worked best for them.  But regardless of the form, we were hoping for the best but preparing for the worst.  In my mind, the worst-case scenario was that we found no work in Austin and simply lived off of savings and/or credit cards while we hustled to find work.  I am happy to report that the results from our first month have been very, very good.

We know how much work we need in order to pay our bills.  To really make a freelance lifestyle work, you’ve got to be specific about your work and money goals.  To that end, it helps tremendously that Paul and I keep track of our spending.  We know exactly where our money goes.  That lets us see what we really value and how it fits into our vision of life.  (Wanna know what we love?  Food and our hydroponic garden are at the top of our list these days.)

In my first month of full-time tutoring, I’ve come really close to hitting my goal for weekly tutoring hours.  To be honest, this news comes as a delightful surprise to me.  I’m honored and humbled that so many of you have chosen to work with me, that you trust me to do this important work with you.  I’m inspired by your dedication to learning, to doing your best in challenging courses, to bouncing back after disappointing grades come back.  Being a student is hard work.  It’s my pleasure to join you on this journey, whether it’s for an hour or two or an entire semester of weekly tutoring sessions.

Thank you for everything, dear students.  I’m looking forward to the rest of the fall 2014 semester and continuing to do my best to help you do your best.  We <3 students, and we hope it shows.

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