Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Theology studies conundrum

OK, so the most important short term goal is done - finding a job. From that, the other landmarks should fall into place - living on my own, paying my own bills and establishing credit, and settling into a manageable lifestyle.

But unfortunately, I can't quite settle until I move another mountain: applying to masters programs in theology. Ugh, this is such a chore; if only I could have finished the M.Div program at Mundelein Seminary, this would be so much easier. As it is, I am at a total loss as to where to begin. I didn't have enough time during my last trip to the Midwest to visit the schools that were recommended to me - Marquette, Chicago Divinity, or Notre Dame. Now I'm kind of stuck. Let me count the ways.
  • I have a job as a high school teacher, and I assured my interviewers that I had no intention of splitting at my first opportunity. I would feel like a dog if I didn't given them at least two consecutive years. This means that I am limited to Summer programs for 2008, and this means also that my deadlines have jumped up a season. It immediately disqualifies me from Notre Dame's MTS program, which they recommend for students seeking doctoral studies, which I most certainly am.
  • I have to take the GRE exam. I would rather share a glass of septic waste with the unholy mutant spawn of Richard McBrian and a giraffe.
  • Money's going to be tiiiiiiiiight. I'm actually not incredibly worried about this one; a Suze Orman book convinced me that I can afford to go into debt if I'm smart about it. But sadly, part of being smart about it is applying for grants.
  • My academic record is schizophrenic. One year computer science at the UofA, one year English lit at St. John's Seminary College, two years philosophy in Belgium, and two years of an incomplete 4-year M.Div program at Mundelein. I have more credits than you can shake a textbook at, but they're all so scattered that I'm scared no masters program will take me. I'm a total mutt.
  • I have no idea which programs to pursue. Of course, beggars can't be choosers, but I know what I want from a master's education and I'm not going to settle if I don't need to. The professors need to be brilliant enough not to make me miss Mundelein or Louvain, and the program must lead to opportunities for employment and doctoral work. Not having to take too many classes with stupid liberals would be a plus (intelligent and engaging liberals I can work with).
It has been almost 18 months since my last day in a classroom. What could be more depressing than the thought that one is getting a little dumber every day? I have to get myself back on track.


Suzanna said...

Are you feeling a bit of restlessness and boredom? When I graduated I thought, "Yay! No more studying!" And then promptly began to feel bored to death. I'm thinking about pursuing a second bachelor's in theology just to have something interesting to do...

Br. Thomas said...

What about online degree programs?

What about finding a teaching position near the University of your choice (a little late for that suggestion, huh).

I feel your frustration about not being in school... I had to take off two years of school for pastoral year and novitiate... how I longed for the classroom.

And, hey, you'll be working in a classroom, that's pretty cool.

Jeff said...

I'm terrified of online programs. There's a part of me that goes, "Isn't that... cheating?" And it seems like it wouldn't be nearly as enjoyable; nothing can replace the whole classroom experience. But I guess it's an option.

Br. Thomas said...

Hey, I got an e-mail today that might be just your solution!

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Why waiting, Jeff, why waiting?!

Rusty said...

Personally I'm getting ready to go online for college. Via Devry.

You have to be careful because some of those colleges are scams. (Another said fact about our nation, we have more of college scams than any other nation).

I always wanted to do the dorm thing, but gotta be realistic ya know?

Anyway take a swing at it things might workout?

Matt of CG said...

"Why waiting?" Ha!