Sunday, April 13, 2008

News! I'm Moving to Knoxville!

It's official! I'm going to bid farewell to DC and move to Knoxville, TN at the end of May. I've accepted a position with the University of Tennessee as a Curriculum Development Specialist, and will be working at Oak Ridge at their Institute of Public Service - Law Enforcement Innovation Center (LEIC).

I'm thrilled about this position, as I will be working with over 100 subject matter experts involved in training the National Forensics Academy, Air Force, Army, and other branches of government, large corporations, etc.. I'll be taking their content and coming up with a training program design in a hands-on experiential learning format. I'm also responsible for helping to develop standardized monitoring and evaluation techniques for our trainers.

LEIC is currently completing a very large addition to their building, and has constructed an outdoor classroom complete with a burn cell, stairwell going nowhere, and lab to conduct and practice investigation techniques with participants. During the summer they actually has a 10 week national academy, and the investigators come and stay in Oak Ridge for this. I'm looking forward to seeing this in action.

But overall I'm thrilled to officially become part of the Knoxville community and UT! I can wear orange now and look forward to a fall full of football games and tailgates. (The benefits package for state employees rocks!) Yes, this is part of the best part -- UT full time employees get reduced tickets for family, friends, and guests. Last Christmas, I was given a UT orange cooler and now I can finally use it!

So while the majority of this post was about the job, and UT, I have to admit my enthusiasm and excitement about moving to Knoxville has been primarily driven by a support, and a love that I have come to cherish. The Boy and I have been dating for over 2 years now, and in a long distance relationship for what's beginning to become a year and a half. We've managed it well, and this last year was much easier as we spanned only DC to TN, not TN to South Florida. But there are so many things that we want to be able to share together, that distance sometimes makes it hard to do. The Boy has been a steady rock in my life that I can count on during the good (to be my biggest cheerleader), the bad (have a shoulder to cry on), and the everyday in between - always a few laughs. He inspires me in how he lives. And we've grown close, and I look forward to all of the opportunities well have to keep growing closer once we are in the same city. He's amazing, and a blessing in my life. Together, I feel we become better people.

Here I come UT, Knoxville, and closer to The Boy! I'll keep you posted on future developments ie looking for an apartment and planning on finding a new car.

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