In a few weeks my term as chair of the math department will end. I’ll return to the physics (actually, PCSE, for Physics Computer Science and Engineering) department. I’ll still be teaching a course I developed for math, an introduction to Mathematica, but I will also be back to teaching physics, which I have greatly missed.
It was not fun being a department chair. Some people love it—I did not. I am not cut out to be an administrator. I have always been more of a follower than a leader. I would say the experience was interesting at times—but really horrible tasks (in my opinion) such as writing performance evaluations and annual reports and scheduling classes—those I will not miss. And my research time was reduced to a fraction of what it was before becoming a chair.
The job involves a lot of interaction with students, students looking for help, and that part I will miss.
And I will miss the chairs' meeting with the dean of the college, where we learned all the juicy stuff before everyone else!
It is what it is. Chair of a department is a stepping stone to higher administrative positions—of which I have no aspirations.
Also to look forward to: in May we are moving into our new building!