And just like that...I started my grad school program last Thursday and by the end of my first class I decided this wasn't the program for me. Just like that.
What does this have to do with being Charm City Mama, you ask? Well you become a new parent, balance career and home and then decide to throw grad school in the mix within the first year of your balancing act and see how confident you feel. I've told myself that any time invested in school (away from my family) has to be totally worth it to me (financially and personally). I've decided it's the right thing to do for my career. It's a good example for my family, although Charm City Daddy has enough degrees for both of us.I want it and there is no time like the present.
If you didn't know, I work at a university. I love it, btw. One thing working at a university and in academia does, it either gives you or further exacerbates a thirst for knowledge. That combined with a free tuition perk is a fantastic combination. AND in most cases your studies aren't limited to your home institution. You have a choice of any program offered in a system of universities.
Because I was willing to take a few calculated risks, I have been given some incredible, early career opportunities in the poltical arena that have accelerated my career path. Now with my position in higher education, I consider myself in the development phase of my career where I need to hone my skills.
Like most working professionals, my graduate program needs and expectations are pretty specific and practical. "Show me how to do/think x, y, z, thanks bye." Unfortunately after further inspection of the graduate program in which I was recently admitted I realized it would be too broad and too theoretical to be beneficial to my immediate career needs. It really hit home when each of the students in my class began to do their introductions in my first class. Many had not yet started their career or were making a career shift. Neither apply to me.
Luckily there are several top-notch options for my area of interest in the DC area---political, strategic, crisis communications. Even better, I've found two that are fully online and/or can be combined with an MBA track.
So, just like that, all hope is not lost. Now back to the application process!