|Getting an Ed.D at Harvard|
I’m resisting mightily the temptation to continue in tour-guide mode. Did that for lots of visitors to Middlesex County and to Paris over half a century, and found the rôle ever more nourishing. Only took money for it once, near the turn of the millennium, but that’s a story for that spot in the chronology, should I live to arrive there in this narrative.
Here and now, I must hasten to report on our doings in 1966-68:
• my Harvard doctoral program:
• Academic year 1966-7, including
• course work,
• Harvard Project Physics,
• my second and final season as a Seminary teacher,
• what we managed (nevertheless) to do together as a family,
• Academic year 1967-8, including
• independent (yea, even deviant) study
• teaching assistantship: S.A.C.C.H.A.R.I.N.E.,
• our wondrous Christmas with the folks in Paris,
• early work toward the thesis,
• Abt Associates Inc, and
• foster kids and Erik
In case you’re wondering, I earned a Doctor of Education degree. At Harvard, only the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
(GSAS)1 offers a Ph.D. The graduate professional schools2 that preserve their dryness under the University umbrella issue their own doctorates, none of which (according to Ph.Ds) entitle their recipients to be addressed as “Doctor.”3 Well, maybe the MDs.
Most Ed.Ds end up in school administration, I think. I still harbored fading notions of a teaching career, but the Harvard culture has always pushed students toward leadership/administrative positions. I liked to see (and still do see) my best teachers as leaders, but it became clear that the folks who were paying for my expensive schooling had other ideas.
1Big sibling of Harvard College’s FAS (Faculty of Arts and Sciences).
2Alphabetically: Business, Dental, Design, Divinity, Education, Engineering, Government (Kennedy School), Law, Medical, Public Health, and the Radcliffe Institute. It’s probably also worth noting that Governor Thomas Dudley signed in 1650 the Charter of Harvard College, thereby instituting (1) the Divinity School (now a very small piece of the Harvard whole, and (2) an Indian school which, if I recall correctly, didn’t survive the 17th century.
|3Ascending the academic food chain, MDs tend likewise to sniff when a Ph.D (or, a fortiori, an honorary) gets the honorific. But then you remember Doctor Collins, who shows up at the Pearly Gates, only to encounter a long line, with Saint Peter nearly concealed in paperwork at the other end. Being an MD, of course, Collins strides to the front of the line and demands admission. Peter looks up, smiles thinly, and says, “Fella, if you want in here, you’ll wait at the end of the line, like everybody else.” Well! This is a whole new concept to the good doctor, but he doesn’t see much else to do. So he takes his place at the rear, standing first on one foot, and then on the other, steam issuing from his ears. Then along comes a distinguished-looking white-haired gentleman in a lab-coat, with a stethoscope. He waves jauntily at Peter, and enters. Mightily incensed, Collins heads for the gate, until Peter smiles again: “Oh, Him? That’s just God. He likes to play doctor, now and again.” I’ve told this story to rather a lot of people, including sizable assemblies of MDs, and I always treat those who find it funny differently, shall we say, from those who don’t.|
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