With a B.A. in Philosophy and a minor in Biology, Mike Morris set off on a 15-year career as a graphic designer during which he lived in four different states, co-owned a book design firm for five years, and got married. He started with the APA in 2011 and is currently in his penultimate semester as an M.B.A. student. He is father to a toddler, has a baby on the way, and is a part-time photographer for various landscaping companies.
What do you do at the APA?
Most of us at the national office do many things. I do marketing: planning, graphic design, social media, emails, incoming and outgoing ads, mailing lists, press releases, and the like. I work primarily with the executive director and publications coordinator for this. I continue to handle career services tasks like customer service and reviewing ads for PhilJobs: Jobs for Philosophers, career-related data on the website, the Grad Guide, and placement service at the meetings. I manage the paper submission system for the three APA divisions. I do some behind-the-scenes stuff with the blog. I also work with the donations assistant, and I’m the backup IT person. You might see me at divisional meetings working registration or taking photos of sessions, lectures, or receptions.
What is your favorite part of your job?
I enjoy any part of my job where I’m doing something creative or enabling someone else to do what they need to do, but my favorite is working the meetings. I love to see philosophers doing philosophy and interacting with each other. It’s really exciting. And if I have a few minutes to sit in on a session, I do.
What do you like to do outside work?
When I have time, I like to explore abandoned buildings, converse with people, take photos, play with my little boy, watch TV with my wife, read science fiction, learn about anything, hike in the woods, drive, listen to podcasts, see movies, go to small-venue concerts, do things with technology, eat food, and drink scotch.
What’s your top tip or advice for APA members reading this?
You are the APA. Get involved by participating in meetings, committees, governance, online discussions, and any other opportunity that interests you. Contribute and be heard.
What advice do you wish someone had given you?
Do not do what you love for a job, unless you can truly be your own boss. Find a career that you can be good at, that suits you, and that meets your needs. Save what you love for yourself. This will enable you to keep on loving it. This isn’t advice for everyone, but it would have been good advice for me.
To what time would you go in a time machine?
First of all, I’d check out the time period surrounding the big bang. Second, starting from the present, I’d like to hop forward in increments of ≈100 years to see what’s new.
What technology do you wish the human race could discover right now?
I’d like to see the technology to instantaneously and inexpensively cross any distance. So much of the world is closed off to so many people. How much richer would our lives be if we could go anywhere? And really, it’s incredibly annoying that people haven’t gone farther than the moon. Yes, I’m aware there will be problems with this type of tech. We’ll adapt.
Find out more about Mike here.
This section of the APA Blog is designed to get to know our fellow philosophers a little better. We’re including profiles of APA members that spotlight what captures their interest not only inside the office, but also outside of it. We’d love for you to be a part of it, so please contact us via the interview nomination form here.