Wednesday, November 28, 2012

I was reading the Ph.D tips blog today after searching the terms, "Ph.D+stress."   The author asked a pretty important question, "Why put yourself through the stress to qualify for a minimum wage job?"  As I consider whether or not to really push on with the Ph.D (after, of course, I figure out how to continue to pay for it), this is something I've considered.  I've been hired at the University level with a Master's degree, so do I REALLY need to keep going?  What are the positives to keeping going?  What the negatives?  At this point, I'm not sure keeping going is going to mean a higher income for me in the future.  What I do know is that I'll end up with some debt, some stress, and less time with my family.  On the other hand, what sort of message am I sending to my family if I quit?  I'm very clearly sending the message that when things get tough, it's okay to bail.  I also won't get to have the sense of satisfaction of walking across the stage or having the letters, Ph.D after my name.  I'm certainly not the only one who has thought about this.  My search came up with 24, 800,000 results.  Many of which share the horrors of working on one's Ph.D.  For instance, this author writes, "The cost of my Ph.D? Stress, nothing but stress," and this author writes, "If you are naturally someone who worries, then being a PhD student gives you plenty of opportunities to exercise your habit."  

So, I ask you, given the amount of stress I feel during the Ph.D process, is it worth busting my hump to figure out how to pay for the rest of my education? 

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Need a little help

I need a little help figuring out how to pay for the rest of my Ph.D. since I have just about reached my aggregate limit for my student loans.  Unfortunately, I did not figure out how close I was to my limit until I registered for my next term.  Getting close to my aggregate limit means that I have a small amount I'm still able to take out in Unsubsidized Student Loans, but after that I have to find other funding.

I have looked into the following options at this point:

Right now, my only option seems to be a direct loan and I'm not excited about that option.  Frankly, I have been tinkering with the idea of stopping my Ph.D. all together.  It's a conversation that Hubby and I have had several times and I always come to the conclusion that I should persist.  However, now that I am not sure how I'm going to pay for the rest of my degree, I'm thinking a little more seriously about becoming a Ph.D drop out.  Especially after reading this article at The Chronicle of Higher Education. 

Having a Master's Degree has opened the door for my newest endeavors:  developing curriculum for a for-profit college and working for a university in Wisconsin.  At this point, I'm not sure if finishing the Ph.D is going to be worth the cost, especially if I take out another sort of loan.  Thankfully, if I continue my work with this particular University (which is considered a non profit) I will be eligible for student loan forgiveness.

So, what do I do?  Any creative ideas? 

What Happened?!

I have a couple of blogs that I have decided have run their course.  The first called, Play for Life, can be found here.  I will continue to update this blog from time to time, but I have decided that since it is connected to my old g-mail account (the one I had before I got married), that it is time to move on.  I've also decided to retire my Early Childhood Educator's blog, Bristle Blocks and Fire Trucks.  Again, this blog was created during my time as a classroom teacher with Head Start and I've moved into some other roles since that time.  Finally, I've decided to retire the Penny Pincher Primer, mainly because I haven't posted in it since 2009!

So--what will be the focus of this blog?  I'm not sure yet.  There's a lot I could write about.  Play For Life took a very different turn when I became a wife and step parent.  It took another turn when Hubby and I started to discuss having our own child.  What I haven't written about is my journey as a Ph.D student.  I may go in that direction.  I'm just not sure at this point.  So. . . my friends, what do YOU think I should write about in this new journey?  I look forward to this blogging journey and hope you'll stop back soon. :-)