The ritualistic activities leading up to the defense
Apr 1st, 2008 by Frank LaBanca, Ed.D.

As the conclusion to my dissertation experience drew near, I found myself engaging in some ritualistic activities to make the experience memorable. However I feel I should scribe them in good faith, as the memory begins to wain.

The Connecticut Science Fair was held at Quinnipiac University from March 13-17. I was fortunate enough to mentor another student to the International Science and Engineering Fair. On of my new Oxford freshmen was a finalist, and actually placed second in the Energy category. During the Thursday finalist session, I make my annual trip to the top of Sleeping Giant State Park, thinking about my presentation, while clearing my mind with wonderful fresh air. After Saturday’s awards ceremony, I made my way to the university library to finish Chapter 1-3 revisions. Seemed appropriate to conclude these chapters at the location which made it all possible.

I then travelled to Wooster Street in New Haven to Libby’s to have a “vanilla-with-nuts” Italian ice. I haven’t been there in many years, but fondly remember my many trips with George while we were both single, working at Stamford High School.

My final stop was to Seaside Park in Bridgeport, where I captured some images of the Black Rock and Penfield Lighthouse for a poster I made for my major advisor as a thank you gift. Those pictures can be viewed at www.flickr.com/franklabanca

I had a wonderful conversation with Ralph the next week to discuss my implications section and we also had time to discuss the life of the doctoral students. Although many years apart, it was easy to directly relate to Ralph’s stories.

I framed pictures for Art (grandfather and grandchild) Ralph (Rosa rugosa at Edgartown) and Marcy (two lights at a distance) as a creative tribute to their contributions to the process.

The defense was exciting and challenging, and of course rewarding.

On to completing the 092 work!
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