Tuesday, August 20, 2013

To Degree or To Not Degree

I got an email on my work email from my boss regarding an EdD program opening up next summer.  (Not to get too excited, he sent it to everyone - in spite of telling me- and probably anyone else who asks - that entering a doctorate program is not worth it! He's in the middle of his final throes of his own doctoral program). 

When I first was hired at my current job, I was so excited to find out that one of our benefits is help with tuition for further professional study.  Being the big softie that I am, I could feel the tears prickling at the back of my eyes, because I have always wanted my doctorate, and I have always come back to the conclusion that it is just too expensive, and that I am getting too old for it to pay itself back.  I thought, maybe, with the generous help this organization gives, I could do it anyway. 

However, I have two kids in college - and when they get out, two more will enter in, so really, even with the help, it's not something I can rationalize.  I would have to leave the classroom to make it worthwhile, because, folks, I am ridiculously gifted in the educational credits department (still paying for the last one, as a matter of fact), and getting more credits won't move me up any teacher scale.  On the other hand, it will make me eligible for administrative jobs.  I have to decide whether that's what I want to do.

Some days, I love my job and the kids and there is nothing I want more than to stay here in this classroom.  On other days, I want to do even more.  I like research - that's the truth.  And educational research is fascinating.  I like working with teachers to make schools more effective places.

Honestly, my heart was joyful with that flyer in the mail, until the tough questions kicked in.  Plus, I do remember how hard the last degree was - I had 4 small kids, a full time teaching job, and it meant a lot of late nights and stress, and that was just a professional degree.  I also remember my MA - carting babies to classes (mine, a foster kid on a heart monitor, etc.), also working full time (but not in a classroom, which was easier).  Mentally stimulating, physically exhausting - and both times, I was a lot younger and more energetic.  And this degree means traveling to Oahu quite often, and I don't think, unlike my last traveling degree that the costs are covered by the University.  That's quite a lot more cost kicked in - plus time away from the farm, which is not negligible. 

Well, the application is due January 14; I have time to think about this. 


Unknown said...

I'm in the same situation, Nancy. Thinking about going back for a DNP. It is a tough decision!

HeirloomRosaries said...

Go, Daughter. You have always loved to learn.