Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Back to School

Terri wanted me to expand on my return to studying, so here goes.

About 5 years ago I was offered the chance of doing a degree at the university that I work at, free of charge, with some classes in normal term time, some in the summer. This sounded like a great idea, so I signed up.

I did a preliminary short course to get me started, and then started studying properly. Everything was going well, my marks were great, and I was thoroughly enjoying it.

Then my eldest daughter was taken ill. I soldiered on with the classes, but my out of class study time was severely reduced with everything else going on. I finished the first year, scraping through my exams with no effective revision, a couple of weeks before we lost our daughter. Summer classes were out of the question, so I decided to take a year out to see how things went. By the following summer I was still not prepared to return to classes on the anniversary of my daughter's death, so I just let it slide.

Then I got talking to my head of department, who is the greatest boss you could ever want. Realizing that I was never going to be happy returning to summer classes he suggested that I switch over to just doing classes during the normal academic year, September to June. It will take me longer to finish, but at least I will be working on it.

So here I am, starting Year 2 in a class full of 19-20 year olds. being taught by someone that I have been working with for the last 17 years. Interesting, to say the least!

So wish me luck! I am going to need it, especially with those darned exams. I am too old for cramming...

13 comments:

mindy said...

I think that's fantastic that you're back at it. Even if it takes a while and it's sometimes awkward, you will be glad you did it when it's all over. At least that's how I felt about my MBA! Good luck!

James said...

I was studying for a HND in Electronics 8 years ago in a class full of 19-20 year olds. It was a pain in the arse to be honest, the noise level and the messing about. I was on day release from work once a week.
College was a lonely experience, sitting in the canteen on my own at mealtimes....

Jen said...

When you get older, grades just matter that much more. They're more important to you now. I understand this all to well! Go grab 'em by storm, Chief Rock Chef! You'll be and do amazing things!

tz said...

welcome to the returning student club! The thing is you do have a better appreciation for school, life and studying and you're much better at managing your time :)

but then the energy thing...hmmm, wish i had the energy i did at 20

terri said...

That's GREAT! I'm so proud of you!

I should go back to school too. I've said that continuously since my oldest was born. I seem to lack time and motivation, though. So I don't see it happening anytime soon.

kenady said...

I would love to go back to school! I so enjoy learning:) Good for you and good luck!

Chief Rock Chef said...

Mindy - Thanks! You weren't quite as late as I am , though :-)

James - But my situation is very different. The students have already known me for a year as the helpful technician who saves their butts from time to time, and once the lectures are over I head back to my desk. I can see that you would not have had much fun.

Jen - Thanks! Talk about pressure! ;-)

tz - I think the only time the energy thing will be a problem is when we go to Malta for the week-long field trip - I might have to skip some of the late-night drinking sessions!

Terri - I think it is just a case of getting started. Once you get going it just seems to roll along, and you find the time somehow. What would you study?

Kenady - Thanks. What would you study?

Sitting in Silence said...

Good luck....I can tell you are bright so I am sure you will do well...if not top of the class....xoxo

Chief Rock Chef said...

Sitting in Silence - Now that is just getting silly! But thanks!

Teresa said...

Rock Chef...GOOD FOR YOU!! That is fantastic and I give you a ton of credit for picking this back up!

I have no desire to go back to school...at this point I just can't imagine adding anything else while the kids are little...but if I did go...I'd study a mix of marketing & phsycology. Things like 'why people buy what' and 'what kinds of advertising works and why' intrigues me a lot!

jenelle said...

good for you.

Marie said...

Well done and good luck!

Um Naief said...

yes, good luck!! :)

it is weird going back to school w/ a bunch of young ones. but... it could be a lot of fun... so hopefully that's the case.

i used to cram... but it seems the older your get, the more studious you become.

again, good luck and enjoy!