Friday, August 27, 2010

Back to School...What's Up with That?

So regular droppers-by on the blog may have noticed that most polls have to do with history, reading, sewing, or an amalgamation of history-related topics. The current one...not so much. About how you feel about back-to-school time? What's up with that?

Well, it's a subject rather personal to me at the moment. I decided back in July (which really isn't a lot of time when you come down to it) that I'd been away from school long enough and was tired of delaying returning for my Master's just because I was working and my husband is in grad school. I stopped fretting over what subject I should pursue--wouldn't it be smarter to pursue a professional degree like an MBA or MPA, shouldn't I think about where I want to work, I ought to get something marketable--and decided to just return to my first love: History. So I frantically researched my university's programs, got approved as a non-degree student with the intent to apply for the Master's, and filed more paperwork than I have since my undergrad days.

And yesterday, for the first time in three years, I registered for a class. It was a thrilling, nostalgic, and slightly scary moment--though I'm excited to get back to structured studies, I'm also leery of working full-time and going to school. And of course I don't want to give anything up--writing, sewing, reenacting aren't negotiables in my life. So we'll see how this goes (she says with a little apprehension), but overall I'm very excited to get back to it.

How about you? Any other returners to classes this year? Anyone just looking forward to getting done with school?


Noelle Pierce said...

I have been in school since Pre-K, non-stop. I'm on a course to finish my dissertation this year, earning me an Ed.D. degree. I'm soooooo ready to be done. :-D

If I hadn't maxed out the student loans with this grad program, I'd consider going back for other things, like auditing history classes for my writing research, taking a few writing courses, or doing something more hands-on or artsy, like ceramics or photography classes. Or maybe languages. I've always loved languages. So while I complain about how much I hate school, I'll probably be a lifelong learner. I get excited about new experiences. I just won't go for another degree. It's the commitment that bugs me. ;o)

sharmon said...

Kudos on furthering your education! I fall into the self-taught category of learners. That is, though I always did well in school, being more introverted, I prefer to do my learning at home from really great books and now online (not structured classes--yet). Also wreaks havoc on the bank account.
However, there is much to be said about all those "forced" papers to be written and deadlines. I did take a creative writing class though I was sure I could never "write to order". I discovered I could, under a deadline and then share it w/ others for critique. This was huge as far as strides toward being a published author because these are three skills you must possess to succeed.
Have fun going back to school!

Connie said...

Congratulations! How exciting! What class have you registered for?

Kat Zhang said...

I've just finished my first week of classes :) Taking some great classes this year with some professors that seem really cool so far!

Hope your classes go swimmingly!!

Audra said...

Congrats on taking the plunge and following a dream! I've got pie-in-the-sky wishes to become a librarian, but I don't know if I'm brave enough to try so myself. My wife has just left grad school after realizing she really didn't want to be a parish minister -- so we're celebrating a fall free of classes for the first time in a long time. :)

Rowenna said...

Thanks everyone for the kind words!

Noelle--good luck! I hope someday to get to the PhD stage in history...will see :) Maybe not for many years :)

Sharmon--you're right, many different ways to learn! I do a lot of on-my-own research but have been missing the camaraderie and community of a class.

Connie--thanks! It's a class on late ancient Rome, and the transition from pagan to Christian culture. Not exactly my usual blog topic, but is actually an area of interest of mine :)

Kat--glad to hear classes are going well!

Audra--my husband is a PhD student and last fall was the first he didn't have classes-just research. Apparently we can't go more than a year without one of us needing homework :)

dolleygurl said...

A big congrats to you! I was thinking about starting my masters this fall (I have been out of school for a year). I was going to do it online - but I don't really need it right now and with my boyfriend just starting vet school, there isn't really a lot of money at the moment. But I do plan to get to it in the near(ish) future. In the mean time I am going to take an adult ed class on the community college just to have something easy and fun to do - I think I'm going to try my hand at drawing!

Kathleen Wall said...

Good for you! I miss those days... but not enough to go back right now.

The beginning of the semester always seems overwhelming. If it's important to you, you'll find time to do all the things you love.

Anonymous said...

Goodluck, Rowenna. You're braver than me and I so admire your tenacity. Finished my BA and post-grad librarianship qualifications and left it at that. I grew to hate structured learning. But then I was very young at the time.

Knowledge for me is now through seasonal adult-education classes . . . Tai Chi, kayaking, botanical illustration even Bollywood dancing . . . an eclectic mix filled with the wierd and wonderful and no deadlines.

But for me, my deepest learning comes from life and research for writing. Deadlines are of my own making!

Jillian said...

Congrats! I'll be heading back, too, in a week or so. (For my BA.)


- Jill

Lua said...

Oh I loved this post Rowenna- You wrote about everything that I’m feeling lately… After 2 years of staying away from school, I’m returning for my MA degree and I’ve also returned to my first love: Writing. I’m excited, scared, thrilled, confused all at the same time. I’ve done so much paper work, packing and visa stuff that I haven’t had the time to think about what’s going to happen when I actually start to school…
It’s going to be an exciting year for both of us! :)

Rowenna said...

Dolley--continuing ed classes always tempt me, too--I'd love to take something like yoga or art or something creative!

Kathleen--I'm trying to take some time to breathe now before it gets too overwhemling :) We'll see if that helps!

Mesmered--I can hear you on that--the things I've learned researching for things I've written! I wonder if any of them will resurface in term papers.

Jill--congrats! Best wishes on the schoolwork--and enjoy!

Lua--we need to keep tabs on one another as we head back for grad work! Nervous and a little intimidated after being out of school for a few years...but I'm sure I'll fall back into it. Good Luck!