Posted by: Ken A Locke | May 5, 2013

Back in College

Recently, I travelled with my wife to her weekend intensive college course.  She is doing the work to earn a Master’s in Library Science.  I, and our daughter, went along for the ride, partly because it was our 26th wedding anniversary, partly because there was a party for her classmates the next day, and partly because we wanted to check out the mighty metropolis of Emporia, Kansas.  Believe me, you need to be RESTED when you hit Emporia, because it is ‘full speed ahead’ and a ‘no off-button’ kind of place.

Not really.

But seriously, the town does have a lot of charm and innocence.  I’m sure there’s a gritty part of Emporia, but we didn’t see it.  Maybe we’d have to drive around some more to really dig into the darker layers of that little prairie town.

I KNOW that I don’t have the focus or attention span to spend 6 semesters working on a master’s degree.  I’m doubtful that I even am interested in anything enough to find an area of concentration.  Everything I can think of seems to involve a lot of MATH, which I have sworn off of permanently.  Ever since high school, where letters took on a huge role in algebra, geometry, and algebra 2 (why isn’t it ALL algebra???), I was hopelessly lost.  Matter of fact, in college, I tried to major in chemistry – because I DO love that periodic table – but couldn’t do the math involved in any of it.

My point:  citizens of this country (which includes my wife, Angie) who voluntarily return to student status to earn a higher level degree in ANY field are mentally tougher than I.  No amount of cajoling – financial, mental, or physical- could drive me back into the halls of learning to pursue greater knowledge.

There may come a day when I am ready to face the task of dedicated, focused learning about a topic that fascinates me – but that day is not today.

Bravo to all of you who challenge the dragon of college! May your fortunes increase and your resolve never waver.


Responses

  1. It’s funny that you put it this way, Ken, and it certainly makes me feel better about myself. I always felt like I went back and got a Masters, followed by a Doctorate a few years later, because I just didn’t know what else to do! It was more out of necessity than mental toughness. At the time, in fact, it even felt like I was being weak, like I couldn’t really handle the “real world” so I escaped back into academia! I guess it’s really all about perspective.

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  2. hey, michael,

    yeah, i was really surprised by how strongly i felt that i COULDN’T do what these other students were doing. perspective, for SURE!!

    Like

  3. When I went back to school for a Masters it was so much fun for me to be on a college campus again. I am sure I neglected plenty of things at home – with three – four – five kids at the time. (depending on foster kids) But working constantly at home, a major time consuming job, and all the other things like church, etc., the college campus for me was an escape really. I was also really wanting to learn more about children with special needs and how to work with them so I was motivated. If the right thing comes along that motivates you to head back to school, it does take mental toughness but it also has such great rewards like confidence again in the ability to think, etc. I know you could do it easily but only if you find motivation to do that. It takes mental toughness to be a parent – to keep your bills paid – lots of things that are daily and not really always exciting. Sometimes you need to give your brain a rest, which I am going to do by reading a book!

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