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Name: Anonymous (I don't share my name over LJ)
Year: Halfway through a 3-year program (by credit hours and class availability) that is marketed as a two year program.
Degree you're working towards: Master's
Field of study: Public Health, Environmental Science
Research interests (if any): Not doing research right now... I'm interested in food safety, used to be a part of phylogenetic research, which was pretty cool.
University: Anonymous...
Five year plan: I really only know what I'm doing for the next year and a half. I'm becoming financially independent and getting my own apartment next January. My boyfriend and I will graduate about the same time my lease is up. I am not sure how this is going to play out because neither of us has planned out exactly what we want to do afterward. Too many variables to discuss...
Best way to relieve stress: Do a gratefulness exercise: Post in your livejournal everything that you are grateful for. It works for me! & dailypeptalkfromabestfriend.com
Totally random fact: Falling down stairs is the second leading cause of injury death, following motor vehicle accidents. (This is my excuse for using the elevator.)

Nice to meet you. :-) Thanks for reading.

I feel like I should share some of my insecurities with you guys...

It seems like pretty much everybody in my program is ready for summer right now. There are summer courses, but because they aren't covered in the GAships, most people aren't taking summer courses. I feel like we had so much more drive in the fall and last spring (when two of us started), but now we're just dragging... ya know. It's about time for those finals and papers to come due and then be over with. I seem to always get that way at the end of the spring semester; this has generally been a time of struggle for me. Has anyone ever taken a Spring semester off with success?

I worry a little bit because I feel like one of the most immature people in the program. I'm 25, and I am nowhere close to marriage or kids (a lot of people in my program are married). My boyfriend is younger than me, and in undergrad still, and I feel like I'm kind of a late bloomer myself in this area. I'm still working on moving out of my parents' house (Planned for January of next year). This worries me in part because I don't see myself being ready to have kids until I'm older.

In addition, I wonder if grad school is the right place for me and if I picked the correct field still. I was thinking originally that I wanted a PhD, but now I realize I don't want to be a professor, I definitely want to work in the field, so I may never actually take that route.

I like the field, don't get me wrong, but I really like my natural foods job, and I can see myself ending up with a natural foods company in the end. I don't have a degreed job yet. I definitely enjoy what I do, but I make peanuts, and I could see myself enjoying the field I'm going into but I'm not sure. I don't know if I'm really going to end up in public health or not. I'm nervous about trying to get a new job, but I know I should just jump into it and try to get better pay...

Does anybody share my concerns, or can have insight? Thanks. :-)


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 8th, 2011 03:51 am (UTC)
I still live with my parents and will for another year. I'm 25 and I've never had a boyfriend and probably won't because I live in a small town and no real options. Mind wise, I'm ready for marriage but in reality I'm nowhere near ready. So no you're not alone. I'm not ready to have kids either...

As for spring semester... I'm trying to push myself to get my work done but this semester I'm lacking in motivation partly due to a crappy professor who's making it hard to want to the work. But it's only a little while longer!
Apr. 8th, 2011 11:56 am (UTC)
Yeah, we're getting closer to Summer all the time! :-)

Crappy profs make it difficult to want to care about a class. I have a crappy prof this semester. She doesn't give a crap about teaching or about most of the students. Her answer keys are always wrong, she's miserable at lecturing (just reads off the slides without knowing what it's saying herself), and she assigns as much "group work" as she possibly can. She is super ultra competitive and likes to pit one side of the class against the other side. She reminds me of a high school teacher who is really only teaching in order to be a sports coach! lol.

I like that we both know we're gonna live with our parents for another year. It's a good thing that we have a decent enough relationship with them to stay at home. I know better than to move in with my friends, because I know they would drive me nuts if I lived with them!

I actually met my boyfriend through the internet... But of course he does live around here.
Apr. 8th, 2011 04:30 pm (UTC)
OK, here's the mom advice (I started grad school in my 40s. I have a much different perspective.)

Stop worrying about the future! Only worry about things that you can control. Bad profs, shitty economy, jobs that are still years away - you can't control any of that, so don't worry about it.

Yeah, I know that sounds kind of flippant, but it's not. As a lifelong worrier, ulcers have made me rethink my priorities. Now I only worry about... well, everything, still, but not as much.

It's perfectly natural to question the worth and application of what you're doing, both academically and personally. Get the degree. Just that magic piece of paper ups your potential income, whether the work is directly applicable to the major or not.

Personally, you already know how lucky you are to have family to live with while you finish school. If you're not into marriage and/or kids right now, that's perfectly fine. It's better to be able to get yourself established in a job/career you love first.

And that's the important part. Look for something you'll enjoy doing, not just the typical career paths for your major. Start by checking the employment page of some large natural foods companies to get an idea of the jobs that are out there, and see if you'd like them. Then write your CV/resume to show the transferable skills you've learned.

Apr. 10th, 2011 06:19 am (UTC)
Thank you for the advice. :-) I like the encouragement.

I actually like flippant-ness, it's a word that I've used to describe a friend many times.
Apr. 10th, 2011 07:14 pm (UTC)
Not to say that what you said Was flippant...
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )


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