Where One Door Closes…


    Where one door closes, another one opens. I was supposed to start graduate school this week. Orientation to the school and my program of Medical Device Engineering was to begin on Thursday 8/22. I spend a good deal of the summer going through the gestures, forms, applications, red tape and hoops to get the program paid for. I still came up short. So, I will not be starting the program in the fall. I am not very happy about this. The barrier to me furthering my educational pursuits stopped by the green eyed moneyster. Yes, moneyster. This huge price tag for education that I could not overcome with the combination of the amount of federal loans, private loans (that I could procure) and scholarships made starting the program just out of reach.

    So, for the moment, my graduate pursuits are just beyond my reach, for this fall. I don’t actually have the money this year [having spent it all on applications and supplies and admission fees (which are not refundable)] to apply for fall of next year programs. Not to say that the situation won’t change, since most Mater programs have deadlines later this year in comparison to undergrad programs that have most deadlines from August through November. That doesn’t mean that I’m just going to be twiddling my thumbs though.

    This past spring, I had my abstract for my current line of research accepted for the SACNAS conference that goes this October. I’ve been working on that to make sure that I have the best information, presentation and numbers that I can have for presentation of by research. Suffice it to say, I am excited. I also recently received an invitation to attend the GMiS conference this September as well. So currently I have two conferences scheduled, so I will have the opportunity to network, meet with STEM head-hunters and more colleges with programs that I may be interested in at the conferences. For me, the opportunity to go to these two national conferences with travel and lodging fully paid for are the best opportunities that I have been presented with all year. It does make up for not being able to go to my graduate program this fall. It’s the school’s loss.

    Anyway, I also received a call from the local community college Veteran’s Resource Center with the request for me to become a maths tutor this fall semester as well. Since I did not apply for the position, the request cam right out of the blue. Why would I not apply? Well, while I’m rather good and rather strong in the sciences, I am not strong in math. According to my grades anyway. The person that I spoke with on the phone apparently received my information from a fellow veteran who recommended me for the position. I guess I have guardian angels. Or at least fellow Veterans helping out? I was completely honest with the person who called, and told him that my grades don’t actually reflect my strength in the subject, since I know that tutors are usually required to have at least a 3.0 to 3.5 in maths alone to be able to teach. That would be at least a B in those classes. My average…well, let’s just say I hold a little party at the end of semesters when I pass my math classes, and definitely figure out a reward for myself when I pass without having to repeat the class. I’ve not had that problem with the science classes. Even physics-which is completely filled with mathematical equations the higher you go.

    So, I guess, I can’t be too bummed at not starting graduate school. I’m going to use my newfound free time to take some classes at college extensions, maybe a MOOC or two, and start the research/design on that electronic motorcycle that I’ve been wanting to build. A standard cruiser style, not the racers that seem to predominate the e-bike market currently.

Until next time.