5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Grad School

By: Alison Hansen, Navy spouse

I decided a few months ago that I wanted to go back to school.  The last time I was in school was 13 years ago, when I completed my Masters in Recreation on campus as a single 20-something.  I work for a college so I decided to take advantage of one of the benefits: education.  In September, I began an online MBA program.

1.  I wish I knew that homework was going to be a family affair.

When I applied for the September term, I had no clue my daughter (a 1st grader) would have homework every night and tests every week.  Her studies always come first so I have some late nights.

2.  The universe does not care if I have work to do.

During the second week of class, my sister in law had a house fire and my son ended up in the ER.  It all happened within 24 hours.  My plan to do homework and turn in assignments THAT day was not happening!  During the third week, I was traveling and I had no idea I would have no internet.  Trying to finish homework on a plane, on an iPad, using airplane Wi-Fi for $8 on the red eye IS NOT FUN. 

 3.  I miss paper textbooks.

I am a pretty tech savvy person.  I have to have the newest i-Whatever.  But, I do NOT care for e-textbooks! I enjoy looking back and re-reading things.  And tying concepts together.  And highlighting things. And most of all, doodling.  I will be doing whatever I can to use old fashioned textbooks for future classes.

 4.  I REALLY like locking myself in my office for a few hours.

When I am so stressed out because I have assignments due, I can just get away for a few hours after everyone is in bed.  Sometimes, I may even have a glass of wine and listen to Pandora.  In peace.

 5.  I can do this.  

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