Sunday, December 28, 2014

Reading the Wall Street Journal

     With my new teaching position in the School of Business and Nonprofit Management (SBNM) at North Park University, there are a few perks, very few perks. But, I have taken advantage of a few. First, foremost, and one central to this bloggy bit, is a subscription to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ). For $199, I got a two year online and hardcopy full subscription to the revered business newspaper. The same non-academic subscription would have cost $645. It is a pretty good deal. I took advantage of it.
     I never read the WSJ regularly when I was in the corporate world. I should have but for a combination of factors. There was no time which is always a kind of lame excuse. For some reason, I liked the general news of the New York Times or USA Today which was often a freebee when I was traveling. Focused business and financial news were not as critical to my job. I did, however, read quality, logistics, and supply chain magazines for that critical to my job knowledge. Even though my personal WSJ subscription didn’t begin until November 4th, I have read every issue of the WSJ since August 25th.
     We have a SBNM subscription and the Brandel Library at North Park also has a subscription. As the Operations Management Professor, I do what operations and supply chain leaders always do… I get to work early. At least three days a week, I am the person opening the office. As a result, I bring in the WSJ. After settling in my office, I would finish my coffee by reading and perusing the paper from cover to cover. Yes, it was the old fashioned reading of a physical newspaper with all the crinkly sounds and the starting of articles on one page and midway having to flip several pages to finish them. It was old school and it felt good… mostly. Truth be told, I never liked reading part of an article on page n and having to finish it on page n+5. Not having this distraction is a tremendous advantage of the online version in my opinion. 
     While the school papers are free, I did not have online access to save and share articles. In this modern era, this is even more of a nuisance to me than I would have thought. I love to cut, paste, quote, post, and forward articles of interest. Teaching operations and micro-economics, I want to do this with students often in online discussions and to create paper topics. Reading the paper everyday created all of these opportunities. Not having access to the online content required me to have to go to our admin who managed our SBNM subscription. I would have been bothering her every day with multiple requests.
     I would have probably settled for an online only subscription but they did not have that option. I even called the WSJ to try to negotiate an online only academic price. Not surprisingly, the negotiations were to no avail. Thus, I get the hardcopy at home every morning and full online access. I am enjoying reading a newspaper on a daily basis again very much and using it for classroom and assignment purposes even more than I even thought I would. 
     I am feeling like a grownup professional.

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