Tuesday, December 26, 2006
I graduated from NC State with my MA in English December 20th 2006 and boy am I happy!
My husband, Keith, and friends Jane, Beth and Nancy were there to cheer me on, and later that day I picked up my son from daycare wearing my cap and gown. Daniel kept saying, "I'm so happy!" echoing my feelings.
So I made it happen. I managed to balance family, work, school and graduate on time. I think the key to my success was enjoying my work in English and having the necessary support to make it happen. For instance, if Daniel had not been in daycare/pre-school full-time, I would never have made it, because I hardly did any schoolwork on weekends, if that's any indication.
A Long Time Goal
Ever since I was out of college back in the pre-Internet days, I wanted to go to grad school. I remember this phone interview I had the co-owner of the Moultrie News in Mt. Pleasant, SC (near Charleston) about a job as an account exec and he asked me what my 5 year goal was. Naturally, I said grad school. He then told me that was the wrong answer. The right answer was that I should want to own a home in 3-5 years. Why? I thought. I wanted education and a chance to be in front of my career. Much to my disappointment, my dad agreed with this fellow, but that's another story (and, no, I didn't get the job). Now, I didn't know what I wanted to do in grad school, only that I wanted to go. Not until 5 months after Daniel was born did I position myself for an MA in English and then I decided in June '04 that I wanted a concentration in Rhetoric/Composition. Some folks may say, why didn't you go for your MFA, since that's my focus. Well, I didn't have a good enough writing/English background for the MFA back in 2004 since my undergrad was in Finance, not English. The MA was perfect for me and maybe someday I'll go for my MFA...
Fall '05 sucked. 11 credit hours, 6-7 tutoring center hours a week, 3 sessions of speech therapy/OT for my son. And I took all hard classes in rhetoric and critical theory. I think French was the easiest. But, I sure did learn about Plato, Aristotle, Foucoult, Zora Neale Hurston and many, many others. My classes were Tuesday and Thursdays from 1:30-4 and I had my rhetoric class which was a night class from 7:30-9. I worked from 10-1 in the tutoring center. M, W, F were speech therapy days and I also worked the occasional Friday for Lancome makeup, too. It seemed that I never had enough time to read my assignments. I would fall asleep in my critical theory book at 11am and then wake up at 3am and keep on going. I pulled an all-nighter for my 2-credit research class. And Keith and I mashed in a vacation in late October, so I missed all my classes for a week. It turned out that things actually got better for me after the vacation (I think I had about 2 hours of sleep the night before we left so I could get some work done ahead). I sure rejoiced when that semester was over and I had managed to survive it with all As and an A-.