Sunday, June 10, 2007

I Must Be Out Of My Mind

So I'm thinking that I'm a little bit crazy. Due to the total lack of jobs down here in the mental health area, I'm seriously considering going BACK to school again...this time for the big one....the PhD. I figure, what the hell...I went this far in school, why not finish it and be Dr. Howard. UNO has a PhD program in Counseling Psychology and I can do an emphasis in counseling children which is where my interest lies. This is all of course assuming that I actually get into the program. I don't know if this is a stupid idea or not. There's pros and cons...I just don't know what to do. My ultimate goal has always been to go into private practice mental health counseling...my own private practice that is. In order for me to do that right now, I would have to work in the field for at least 2 years while being supervised and pay for weekly supervision to get my licensure. The other route I could take would be to go for my doctorate and have all the requirements completed when I graduate. I'd just take the National Counselor Exam when I finish and I'd then have my licensure and my PhD. Another pro is that all of the interships for the PhD program are PAID internships which make a HUGE difference. I just feel like I need to be out of school! I know I'm not old...I'm not saying that I am, but at 26 I feel like it's time that I need to start getting into the real world. I don't want to still be in school at 30...which is where I'll be if I start this program. That's the big con for me. Stress, stress, stress. Can't life be easy and just figure itself out. Eh, what would be the fun in that.

20 comments:

Darla D said...

I understand your divided feelings - I'm in the midst of my second graduate degree (and keep feeling as if yes, indeed, I've lost my mind). And I'm not nearly as young as you are! As sick and tired as I am of being in school, I do have to say that I've never regretted any graduate work I've done. In the midst of it, I admit to whining a bit. But in retrospect, I'm very pleased with my continued education. Don't know if that helps, but there's my 2 cents.

Chris said...

Thanks so much Darla! So good to hear someone else in the same boat as me. You don't know how much I appreciate that comment ;) I don't think I'll be happy until I have the PhD...I think that's the bottom line for me...I also really enjoy school as much as I complain at times. I'm constantly trying to absorb knowledge. Thanks so much for your input!

DesLily said...

hey Chris: It sounds like that is where your heart is, so if you can do it.. go for it. Not everyone has the option to be able to stay in school, but that doesn't mean you wouldn't do good if you don't. It sure sounds like you have it in you to do the work that you want to. Whatever you decide will be what's right for you, and that's what matters most.

Bellezza said...

I recommend getting you PhD now while you can. I have a double major in Psychology and Elementary Education. I always wanted to teach for a long while, but I wanted something with Child Psychology as well. Little did I know that getting graduate work done in the pscyh. field takes ridiculously long. I have a MSEd in Education which I got in less than two years, while I worked, but that would not be the case with psych as you well know. I'd have to do years of classes plus an INTERNSHIP. I think not. All that to say, grab the chance while you can, and while you're still in the groove of schoolwork. So to speak. The chance isn't always there.

Dark Orpheus said...

Big decision to make, Chris. But from your post there seems more Pros on the PhD than not. It can feel terrible now to think of yourself still in school at 30, but you have your entire life to work. No need to rush it! :)

Education is a wondeful thing. But even if you don't go for the PhD at the end, you can still continue learning. More than one route to knowledge.

Bookfool said...

I agree with Bellezza. My hubby has a PhD and it took a long, long time. He was 34 when he finally finished his schooling, but it's been a great boost for his earning power.

I, on the other hand, had to put off my advanced schooling to raise kids. I really regret not putting my foot down and insisting that we stay close to an affordable school. It also keeps getting harder to go back because the cost just keeps rising.

Chris said...

Well thanks Deslily, you're totally right...I think I do need to just trust my gut and go where it's telling me to go...geesh...more school.

That's what I'm thinking too Bellezza, get it done as early as I can. My first thing was..."I'll go back later and get my PhD." But I started thinking...I'll probably never go back if I stick to that game plan. If I want my PhD, I have to do it now..I think...lol

Very true Dark Orpheus! There due seem to be more pros. I think I just really want the PhD, so I'm just no listing the cons ;) Regardless of what the choice turns out to be, you're right...I'll continue to learn and either way, it'll be the right one.

Chris said...

Hey Bookfool! You snuck in while I was writing back to everyone ;)

That's my thing too...if I don't do it now, I just know that something's going to come up and I'll end up not going back to school. There will be some reason not to go back. So I really have to decide how much I want this degree and what it would mean.

You're right about the cost of school too! It's ridiculous. I heard stats on CNN the other day on the rate of inflation of costs of college and it was some ridiculously high percentage. Scary....

Stephanie said...

Chris, for the record, if I could have made a living out of being a student, I'd STILL be in school!!

I was always planning on going back and getting a graduate degree, but stuff always came up. First marriage, then kids, then job stuff. If you have the time and will, you should defintely do it now. And from just reading your post, it sounds like you'd like to have it. Truthfully, if you aren't going to be happy until you have it, GO FOR IT!!

Carl V. said...

I'll be supportive no matter what you decide. I'm proud of anyone who can go back to school and get more degrees. Wish I had the desire.

Chris said...

Stephanie, Thanks for the support :) I'm still turning it around in my head. I think I'm just going to keep doing that. Think on it for a few days and see what comes of it. We'll see.

Carl, I have the desire, I'm just worried about how long that will last once I get in there. I know I was burnt out a month ago, I just don't want that to happen again. But I want that PhD!! I dunno...We'll just see what the old brain decides after a few days to think about it :p

Pamela said...

DO IT. Never starve yourself of more education. Putting it off to join the workforce does sound like the "right" thing to do, but is it worth putting the education off to scrape to find a job you don't really want in a city that doesn't have anything available? I feel like that's such an easy way to lose sight of the things you really want to get done, and get caught up pushing so hard towards things you wouldn't otherwise care about.
In a way I've been looking at this whole mess our city is in as an opportunity. It's like the pathetic work force has provided a lot of us with excuses to pause "real life" and go on with things that we wouldn't have pushed for before, or go places we hadn't fathomed going either.

I don't know maybe this rambling is biased, because I plan on pushing through until I'm Dr. PP.

Chris said...

HAHA! Dr. PP...you should so put that on your business cards when you achieve that title...classic!

You make some great points. It's sad, but if we choose to stay in this state right now, that's really the only option...keep going to school or work for $10/hr. And I'm not working for $10/hr with a master's degree. Thanks Pamela!

Nymeth said...

I'd go for it if I were you. Like others before me have said, it will probably be easier to do it now than later in life. And there's no such thing as too much education.

Whatever you decide, good luck!

Chris said...

Thanks Nymeth! Wow, what would I do without the support of all you guys :)

Bookfool said...

Chris,

When we went off to school, it cost about $25 - $30 per credit hour (at Oklahoma State). Can you believe that? OSU is about par for the course, now, on tuition - probably still inexpensive by comparison with most. I'd move home if I could, just to finish my education. You should definitely go for it. Things just keep getting more expensive and the longer you put it off, the harder it is to go back, IMHO. :)

Chris said...

You're right Bookfool. It's funny you mention OSU! I was actually looking at their Doctoral program in Counseling. I think I've decided that I'm going to stay here though if I go back. Hey, you should go back too once the youngster is out of high school! ;)

Bellezza said...

Hey, if you get a doctrite in counseling, will you pass out your card? :)

Chris said...

Sure thing Bellezza...free counseling to all the blog readers ;)

Bookfool said...

Oh, Chris, OSU is wonderful. Of course I'm an Oklahoman so I'm probably biased, but I was soooo happy there. It's a solid university.