Sunday, September 10, 2006

Only 21 Hours To Go!

I did a degree audit earlier today. It's no big deal; UTPA has a feature on their website that automatically spits one out for you to check. In any case, I have 21 hours to go before graduation. It's all Senior level courses plus an hour of Kinesiology. Woohoo! That's nothing. That's a little less than 2 semesters. That's a couple summer sessions and a semester.

I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, I see the light at the end of the tunnel. On the other, I'm going to have to bust it a little to earn enough money to pay for the courses. When you go to school, it doesn't just cost the money you shell out. There is also the opportunity cost, what you must give up while you pursue the one option. An example of this is that it would be next to impossible to have a full-time job while taking senior level courses, unless you have some really flexible job or graveyard shift. Senior courses aren't generally held in the evening and don't offer too many opportunities. You take them when they are available and that's that. You can imagine telling your boss that you need a few hours off on Tuesday and Thursday, or Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for school. Most business is conducted from 8 am to 5 pm. That's why they are called business hours. There aren't that many jobs out there willing to do without you for so many business hours. So, the opportunity cost is the income you could have earned. You HOPE that you will earn more after graduation.

However things turn out, I am really close and can't wait to walk up to grab my diploma. I will graduate with a degree in Finance. I have no job prospects or specific interests for that diploma. I know plenty of people who work doing things that are way off from what they studied. I chose Finance for my own pleasure. If I could get a job in Finance, it would be great. However, it's the sort of career where you have to have good connections to be able to land a job in the field. I know plenty of jobless and underemployed Finance majors. Given my habit of blogging, most reputable companies can run a search on me and find volumes of disagreeable things. I simply want to graduate. I'll deal with the other nonsense later. Who knows, maybe graduate school is in my future. We shall see how my future unfolds.

2 comments:

wendy said...

That is the light at the end of the tunnel! That's great. I've got 3 years to go.

I know what you mean about working and going to school. I juggled a full-time job and school part-time for 2 1/2 years. My boss was somewhat flexible but would throw it in my face when it was convenient.

If you can, I think the loss in a years worth of salary is worth the job after graduation. For me it will be. I figured out that with my annual salary increases, over three years, at my old job I would still be making about $10,000 less per year than I will make as a teacher when I have my degree. The best part to me will be a career I enjoy.

Keep working at it...you are so close.

Shaine Mata said...

Thanks, Wendy. You keep working at it too. I guess it's something we all have to find a way to get through. A rite of passage of sorts. At this point, I've come so far I simply have to finish.

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