Assistant ProfessorAs of this writing, I'm an assistant professor undergoing tenure and promotion review. At every step of the process thus far—the department vote, the college-wide vote, and now the dean's endorsement—I have been congratulated. Although I understand that the well wishers are simply following social/professional convention, I have a hard time accepting that these institutional hurdles cleared have anything to do with me. I say this because too many institutions, when evaluating the materials of those in the field of ethnic studies and/or those who are of color and/or queer, have failed. Were there some faculty who simply didn't deliver the goods? Yes, of course. But much more common is the scholar who has gone above and beyond who is cast adrift after six years of service. I'm grateful for the insight that has taught me to de-couple my sense of intellectual self-worth from the ways in which any institution might treat me. And at the same time, I'm aware that that understanding comes from having been on the outside looking in when it comes to which types of work have cultural capital and which do not and which types of embodied subjects are credible and which are not. The various checkpoints along the tenure and promotion process are successes on the part of my institution. If anyone deserves congratulations at this point, it is them. Everything I have done on my end was finished and lauded at least a year ago.