Often, the projects are evenly distributed among the faculty, but this year, due to the students' emphases and choice of topics, I ended up being the default adviser for 75% of the students. This was a huge extra burden to me. While I enjoyed directing these independent works, it was also really taxing to keep up with my teaching load while helping these seniors.
Advisers of projects are not paid extra, nor do they get load credit; it's just a part of our jobs. And usually, when I only have one or two to direct, I am fine. But having the bulk of the responsibility for these creative projects this year was tough for me.
Not only that, but one of my colleagues seemed 'put out' that so many of the students had chosen me as their adviser rather than her; however, given that I am the only one in the department who could have advised them based on my area, it made sense for me to agree to direct their projects.
...And now I'm left having to grade all of these, as well.
How does your department deal with such duties? Do you get anything extra for directing an undergrad project (i.e. a reduction in load?)? Any advice on how to do this BETTER?