Do I Stay Or Do I Go Now?

Five for Five was amazing last week, right up until Friday when my world – emotionally – turned upside down.  Doctor’s appointment, messy house, 3 papers to write and I felt incredibly overwhelmed.

Rather normal in my life these days.

But besides all the busyness, I felt off.  While I enjoy the subject matter of my program immensely, it feels wrong.  Not the timing, but the program itself.

At the risk of sounding arrogant, the program is not academically rigorous enough for me.  With my peers throwing around Newsweek and CNN like they are primary sources, my professors not interested in keeping the discussions academically centered and my grades impeccable (I think I’m averaging an A+ in all my classes), I am itching for something more.  I want and need a program that challenges me on all levels and provides sufficient support to land internships, engage in research, and have the research tools handy to produce quality work; unfortunately, the school I am currently attending has been deficient in most of these areas.  Thus, I have to choose: do I stay or do I go?  Do I finish this program and risk not landing a job in my field because I am not appropriately prepared? Or do I wait a year and start another, more rigorous and more academically satisfying, program?

Each has its pros and cons.  For one thing, I hate waiting AND have to take the GRE and ask for letters of recommendation (eck) AGAIN from my previous professors.  Not looking forward to that.  But, we are in a better place financially and geographically for me to apply for a program that is better suited to my goals.

Choices, choices.  I have 2.5 weeks to decide and, in the mean time, I’m throwing around different options of what I would do during that year wait time.  Work? Stay home?  I am not sure.

Anyone want to decide for me?  I don’t think I’m adult enough to do it myself.

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17 Comments

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17 responses to “Do I Stay Or Do I Go Now?

  1. I hate when I have to be the grown up.

  2. Check some other programs. Some of what you think may be needed may not.

  3. Ooooh, that’s a toughie. I guess maybe I’d look at the long-term? But it’s a hard decision!

  4. Being an adult sucks!
    If it was me?
    I’d quit the program and start again in a year — and in the meantime either get a part-time job and the rest of the time stay home.
    But that’s me.. I’m sure you’ll make the right decision for you! 🙂

  5. I think there are several questions – and all have to do with your ultimate goals. I would say, that is the main question to ponder.

    Talk to alums, or the career placement folks. Does this program get you what you want in a job? Do you want to be an academic? If you do, your ‘academic pedigree’ matters a lot. Go for a more rigorous program.

    The secondary question is one of cost analysis. Is the cost of this program (money, time, energy) worth what you will get out of it (in terms of current satisfaction and future job opportunity)?

    And then, of course there is this question – if this program isn’t up to your standards, how does that affect you? (Personally, I need challenge to do my best work. In programs that didn’t push me, my work was less than stellar, even if I was getting an A.)

    • admin

      I am very lucky to have moved right next to one of the best graduate programs for public health. The cost analysis portion is difficult, but if I can work for the next year and put more money away, hopefully it will help bring the costs down. You know? But the decision is still difficult mostly because I am scared. Fear is so silly like that.

  6. Oh my gawd- the GRE! Ugh…I hated that stupid test. I was so glad when it was over. Not jealous of you at all:)

  7. Melanie

    I agree with Kate’s postings. Are you talking about your current program here or something else in the area:

    “I am very lucky to have moved right next to one of the best graduate programs for public health. The cost analysis portion is difficult, but if I can work for the next year and put more money away, hopefully it will help bring the costs down”

    xxoo

    Melanie

  8. That’s tough…go with your gut!

  9. Jared

    I have to choose: do I stay or do I go? Do I finish this program and risk not landing a job in my field because I am not appropriately prepared?I thinks iyts really hard to grow..

  10. Such a tough choice. I don’t have much to add to Kate’s wise words, other than a question: could you finish up this year of credits and possibly transfer them to the other program you mentioned? It also sounds like you have a whole new crop of professors who think highly of you who you’d be able to tap into for recommendations.

    Good luck! Can’t wait to hear what you decide and here to support you either way!

  11. Kate had great suggestions, as did Kristen.

    Must you put yourself through the stress of deciding right now? Why the 2.5 weeks, exactly?

    Can you take a breath and not put so much pressure on yourself? You’re, um, excuse me for saying it… still quite young…

    You don’t yet know what it’s going to be like with three little ones about the place. You seem to be biting off many challenges in very short order. Just saying…

    Sending hugs for tough decisions – all the same.

  12. Claire

    I don’t have much to add to Kate’s wise words, other than a question: could you finish up this year of credits and possibly transfer them to the other program you mentioned?

  13. Barry

    You don’t yet know what it’s going to be like with three little ones about the place. You seem to be biting off many challenges in very short order.

  14. Still waiting….have you decided yet?