Walking the Walk

I now have time for my own writing again. Having completed all the work required for my Master’s degree in Technical Communication, I don’t have any more academic writing on the horizon, affording me ample time to update my blog and work on my novels. The two novels I am working on, Unfinished and The Adventures of Braxton Carter, have been sitting for the past several months as I focused my attention on Instructional Design and the Graduate Final Exam research and the Graduate Portfolio. I am so looking forward to getting back to my own writing.

It has been a stressful month. I had a final project in instructional design to complete and a usability test for a fellow student’s final project to complete on top of researching material from about 14 books for my program’s Final Exam—which consisted of two questions for which I had to write about 2500 words each answer. The exam was two weeks ago, the week after my project was due. After turning in the exam, I had to wait a week and a half to find out if I passed. I was about sick to my stomach the whole time as stress worked its way with me. I finally found out I passed and it took almost a whole day before the weight lifted from my shoulders.

Last night, my wife and I started decorating for Christmas (after I submitted the last thing I needed to for the program: my portfolio) and it was only then that it dawned on me that I had no more school work waiting on me. I had no deadlines looming. I had no assignments pending. No discussion posts to update. It was a weird feeling. Pleasant…but weird.

I just finished my exit interview with the program coordinator who told me how proud the department was at my graduating and having passed the exam on the first attempt. I don’t know how common it is to fail—I meant to ask her, but I didn’t want to sound pompous. After four years of reading my fellow students’ work on discussion posts and essays, it is not outside the realm of possibility that some of them failed.

One of the questions on the exit survey was “do you intend on pursuing a PhD?” My answer was an unqualified “NO!” I have had enough of research and academics to last a lifetime. My advisor did invite me to apply to teach as an adjunct instructor in the department. I have actually thought about it several times. I think I could do it, if they paid enough and could work around my work schedule. And if I decided to stay in Houston.

So, here’s to no more school. Commencement is the last thing waiting on me and it is the 19th. If anyone wants to see me get my sheepskin, here’s the link for the webstream. It starts at 10: https://www.uhd.edu/computing/labs-technology-centers/technology-teaching-learning-center/itv/Pages/Commencement.aspx

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