As graduation approaches, I find myself thinking more and more about graduation. I find myself looking at the schools and programs that I would enjoy and wondering whether I should go. There’s a large part of me that says that since I’m capable and interested, there’s no reason for me not to go. I go in and out of phases of “I don’t think I’ll go” and “I should think about taking the GRE/GMAT so I can apply.”
I’ve known many women at BYU who had kids while getting their masters and PhDs. Whenever I ask them how they did it, it usually gets down to having a supportive spouse who believed in their career and believed in them. They say that it was tough, but worth it. I do have a supportive spouse–Kyle has told me that if I want to go to graduate school he will support me and go with me to wherever I need to go. Because I’ve known a number of women who have done it, I do feel like I can get a graduate degree or two and have kids–I can have my cake and eat it, too.
But then I wonder if I just want a graduate degree to have it. Because I think that because I’m smart enough, I should get it just because. That seems like the wrong answer and if it’s the reason I want one, then I shouldn’t go through the pain, money and effort of it. In other ways, what’s better than to get a graduate degree because you want it? It’s a better reason than getting one because you have nothing else to do with your life.
I enjoy research. I love ideas. As time goes on, I love teaching more and more. I think I would make a really great professor. I could sit in my happy world of learning and literally be paid to be an intellectual. I would also get summers off. How cool is that?
In many ways, I have all the time in the world to sort through how I feel about graduate school. I can work for a few years and then go back to school if I want. I’m not constrained by a system that won’t allow me to return to get the degree I want. But I have been pondering it.