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Thinking about going back to school...

bendyfoot
October 28th, 2008, 11:00 AM
am I nuts? Bored with being stuck behind a desk? Genuinely pursuing my heart's path? Expecting too much (sense of fulfillment, reward etc.) from work?

Blarg. Anyone ever actually done this and lived to tell about it? Been out of school for a few or many years, started a career, get a nice secure job with a good salary, and then...throw everything away and destabilize your family to pursue a degree?

Yeesh. This is what I'm starting to consider, more and more seriously. I'm thinking about doing a PhD. Some catches: 1. we're not in a position to move, and I can't do another degree at the same school nearby so my only two real choices (Kingston or Montreal) are about 165km drive from my house, meaning either ridiculous commutes, working long-distance part-time, or lodging near the university, again maybe on a part-time basis 2. we still have some debt 3. I'm the primary (but not sole) source of income (about 65% or so).

Too much to think about. :wall:

Love4himies
October 28th, 2008, 11:12 AM
I work at Queen's so if you need any info on their post grad programs let me know.

clm
October 28th, 2008, 11:18 AM
You can do a lot of university courses on-line now you know. Might want to check that out too.

Cindy

totallyhip
October 28th, 2008, 11:22 AM
I went back to school part time as a 34 year old adult student. I highly recommend education. Especially in today's job market. It always gives you an edge over someone who doesn't .... even if the job isn't related to the degree !

Good luck!:thumbs up

Melinda
October 28th, 2008, 11:27 AM
my bestest friend lost her job and was the major wage earner at her home, (hubby has terminal cancer) and she went back to school..........did I mention she was 51 when she did this? she's now 54 and working as a PSW in a nursing home and loves it.

Love4himies
October 28th, 2008, 11:36 AM
http://www.queensu.ca/registrar/awards/grad/grad.html

TA's get $32 per hour here.

BenMax
October 28th, 2008, 11:38 AM
When I was 34 years old - I went back to school. Took law courses.

Never too old to follow a dream. Go for it!

bendyfoot
October 28th, 2008, 11:44 AM
Thanks L4H, I was actually just checking out the Biology Faculty pages...:D Some people are doing some pretty cool work. The minimum funding seems pretty good compared to other unis...I'm hoping to qualify for an NSERC or OGS as well, or something comparable. Siiiiiggghhhh, oh the fretting.

phoozles
October 28th, 2008, 02:31 PM
I did it.. Got my BA in English (yeah, I know), and then worked as a Project Manager at a computer company for about 4 years.. I hated every second of it, even though the money was good. So I saved up my cash for a year, quit my job and took an 8 month post graduate course in radio, and here I am today - as a DJ..
The money isn't even close to be the same, but I wouldn't do anything different. It's never too late to make a change - and if you plan it out, you can make it work.

totallyhip
October 28th, 2008, 05:17 PM
The money isn't even close to be the same, but I wouldn't do anything different. It's never too late to make a change - and if you plan it out, you can make it work.

Hey if you love your job eventually the money will be there either monetary reward or personal rewards:)

Love4himies
October 28th, 2008, 05:22 PM
Thanks L4H, I was actually just checking out the Biology Faculty pages...:D Some people are doing some pretty cool work. The minimum funding seems pretty good compared to other unis...I'm hoping to qualify for an NSERC or OGS as well, or something comparable. Siiiiiggghhhh, oh the fretting.

Queen's in the mist of increasing their Grad enrolment so it is a good time to apply.

glasslass
October 28th, 2008, 07:00 PM
I work at a community college and see older students coming back all the time. Of course, not for PHD's here, but so many have lost jobs and are needing to learn new skills. Others retire and come back for personal enrichment and to be stimulated by the young environment. :wall: Oooo, that didn't come out right.

Winston
October 28th, 2008, 07:59 PM
I say follow your heart! Heres what I did..when to College taking Law and Security..changed my mind...ended up with a decent paying job...the opportunity came up for me to learn through the employer on what they called a developmental program...Was required to go back to school and obtain a certificate....I thought that this would have been an easy task and it certainly wasnt! I hadnt been out of school more than 10 yrs and thought it would be okay! NAH! had lots to learn about teaching now....and how difficult it was to continue working full time and taking sometimes 2 part time courses per semester..(cant even imagine having to throw children into the mix for other people!!) .All in all it took me 4 1/2 yrs working in the job and then doing the courses in the evenings...Funny thing is the things I studied are not really pertanent to the job I do in alot of ways!

Was it worth it? heck yes...never to old to learn and follow your heart! just make a plan and stick to it! :thumbs up

Schwinn
October 28th, 2008, 08:35 PM
Unfortunatly, going back to school right now isn't an option for me, or I'd do it in a second. Don't like my job, and the pay is terrible. My biggest fear? Regretting later I didn't.

I know a few people who've done it, and none have regretted it. Sometimes, people think, "Oh, I don't want to spend the next 'x' years in school." But think how long it will take, then remember back that far. I'll bet the time won't seem as long.

As for funding, there are a few options. You might even qualify for student loans. Also, the Life Long Learning plan allows you to take money out of your RSP. Just remember, that with a PhD, chances are, you'll be making more money when you graduate, so you'll be able to catch up on the "lean years".

Frenchy
October 28th, 2008, 08:54 PM
I say , follow your dreams bendyfoot , if you can do it (monetarily) go for it :thumbs up

bendyfoot
October 29th, 2008, 09:25 AM
Others retire and come back for personal enrichment and to be stimulated by the young environment. :wall: Oooo, that didn't come out right.

:laughing::laughing::laughing:

Queen's in the mist of increasing their Grad enrolment so it is a good time to apply.

This is very good to know, thanks. I know who to talk to now if I start really considering Queen's

My biggest fear? Regretting later I didn't.

Yeah, see, that's the thing right now...and I'm starting to feel those twinges of regret already.

I know a few people who've done it, and none have regretted it. Sometimes, people think, "Oh, I don't want to spend the next 'x' years in school." But think how long it will take, then remember back that far. I'll bet the time won't seem as long.

This was my original reason for not going further. I was thinking, "I just did 7 years of university and you want me to do FOUR MORE?!?!?:eek: No freakin' way, I'm outta here!!! But now that I've been working for 3 years or so, I'm looking back at the time that's passed and it went by soooooo quickly. I could have been almost finished by now. :wall:



I say , follow your dreams bendyfoot , if you can do it (monetarily) go for it :thumbs up

Thanks, and the same to others who shared their stories. I have a lot to think about...but I think I can pull this together if I really work at it...oh boy, I'm sensing a pile of grant proposals in my near future...:yuck:

Dog Dancer
October 29th, 2008, 02:36 PM
Bendyfoot, at least you're on the track of looking into it. If it doesn't pan out you can always say you tried. Good for you - follow your heart.