In the beginning there was grad school. That ended in 2010. Now what do I blog about?

NEW BLOG - ACADEMIC AMPLITUDE

June 17, 2009

3 weeks

Three weeks until my summer course starts. I am enjoying the homework-free weekends. And I am taking advantage of the homework-free weeknights by walking for an hour after dinner. I wonder if I can and will keep up that amount of physical activity once the summer term begins. And I wonder if I will be able to continue when I have two courses in the fall and spring semesters. I wish I had the ability to get up at 4:30am and do my 3 miles, then shower, then have breakfast and coffee and pack my lunch & snacks to take to work. I have never been an early riser so the odds of my doing it are slim. But I will continue to consider it. Maybe do that once or twice a week, to free up evenings for school work? I should commit to trying it for a week or two to see if I can adjust.

A few months ago I put in an application for a graduate assistantship. The program coordinator called me and was very nice, telling me she was impressed with my application. She hoped something would be suitable for me, but didn't have anything at that time. The caveat to the endeavor being that I will not be driving 2.5 hours to the main campus to fulfill the responsibility; it needs to be something for which I can telecommute.

While on vacation last week, our housesitter called to say someone from the college called re my application. I got in touch with him as soon as I got back to the office but he is away this week. I am anxious to speak with him. I hope we can work it out so I get the assistantship and alleviate tuition and fees for the next two semesters. As a state employee I do get 50% off tuition, but that covers just 25% of the overall cost for grad school considering fees equal the tuition cost and are not subject to the employee discount.

It was my plan to pay for grad school out of pocket so I wouldn't be sacked with additional student loans. I'll be paying undergrad loans for another 11 years as it is. This past academic year I worked within a grant funded project at work which paid me enough to cover 90% of my tuition & fees so that worked out perfectly. The assistantship would be perfect to finish off my program edu-debt free. Wish me luck.

June 03, 2009

Summer vacation

I am just now starting to relax about school. The end of the term was very stressful - HUGE project due in one course and a tedious exercise in file sharing for the other one (just use the Blackboard Assignment tool already!). Then I couldn't get into the summer course I wanted, and started stressing about the course I did get into (will it be good/challenging?).
Today I am fully engaged in webinars and web editing at work. I am plugged into un-related webinars (read: online seminars) while I manipulate existing web content (from 1998!) and organize it into a logical folder structure prior to the upcoming editing project. The webinars so far have connected me with a few new Twitter followees and followers. The file folder-ing is giving me a headache (duplicates of almost everything with diff pub dates on each copy).
I guess i have to recognize the fact, here, that I getting ready to go on vacation. This technology binge is going to have to hold me over for 7 days/nights while I hole up in a beachside cottage without internet access. I have a stack of books - real books, made of real paper - ready to go with me. I have my MP3 player loaded with podcasts (I have saved listening to the most recent three 'This American Life' and 'Extra Life Radio' episodes for listening to on the beach).
School begins in July so after I get home I will still have a few weeks to relax and unwind before the final surge to the finish line. I plan to garden, and mow the lawn, continue my beach tan, and maybe even finish applying varnish to the trim in the kitchen, a project put off since i started grad sch in Jan 2008.
Writing this blog post is part of my technology binge so I apologize for typos and grammatical errors. I just had to get a post in before I log off for awhile.