the mutability of plans

The funny thing about blogging is that it’s easier to do when it’s a habit. When it’s a habit, I look at all these things which occur on a daily basis and consider them potentially interesting as blog topics; when I fall off the wagon, though, I stop seeing all the same things as remotely worth blogging about – whether or not that’s necessarily true.

Regardless, there are important updates about Graduate School. The good news? I was technically accepted to Davis. The bad news? I wasn’t actually accepted.

So here’s the deal: to be accepted to Davis, you have to be accepted by the school AND sponsored by a Professor. Unfortunately, the Professor I want to work with is short on funding for next year – as such, while I made it through the first round of acceptances, I did not make it through the second. Honestly, this is a good thing, because I would have been sorely disappointed to go work on anything less than the perfect program – and I haven’t been even close to excited about any other program.

I have recently had a couple conversations with this professor, and as of this moment, I plan on reapplying in the fall (though I might apply through a different department).

However, I haven’t just put my life on hold for the next year. Grad School might not have worked out as I’d hoped, but I refuse to just sit around and wait until it does. Currently, I am signed up for a 5 week Quick Start Course in GIS which meets for three hours every Tuesday starting in June. This course is offered through the City College of San Francisco, and is the first among a series of courses to further education in GIS. There are five or six suggested courses which offer extensive training in different aspects of GIS; all courses are affordable and targeted at working professionals, and the program takes between 6 months and 1 year to complete on average. Most importantly, these courses are super affordable (the first is only $180).

These courses aren’t perfect. They won’t give me a Masters or a Certificate of Proficiency, but they will give me a working portfolio, ample experience, and networking opportunities. Combined with my Bachelor’s of Science in Environmental Studies & Creative Writing, I am hoping that this is all I might need to land one of those elusive “real-life” jobs that I’ve been searching for the past two years.

At this point in time, I still plan to apply for a Masters Program in the fall, to start in the fall of 2014. But that’s so far away – and this series of courses I’ve started will only take a year to complete. I could be in the job market by this time next summer, rather than in three years. Earning my Masters is still on the table, but I’m learning that sometimes, plans don’t have to be followed in the order they were made…

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