Updated: Feb 4
I have just finished my fourth week of grad school! It honestly doesn’t feel like it has been four weeks. I am currently taking three courses, which are three units each. Nine units is full-time for graduate students. My program only offers one section of each class and the classes are offered in the evenings.
I didn’t want to overwhelm myself so I stuck with nine units because I honestly didn’t know what to expect. Being a first-gen student, I ALWAYS HAVE QUESTIONS. I used to be self conscious about this but I’ve learned that I worked just as hard to be in this space.
My work load is heavy and I have hundreds of pages to read each week. I am not even exaggerating. My time management skills could use some work but I have created a study system that works for me. I use a lot of my free time to do the readings but if there’s ever some downtime at work, I utilize that time to get it done. I take small breaks when I can because I personally don’t like sitting down for very long. I also designate a day in the week where I don’t do any coursework that way I can have a complete break.
Fortunately, a lot of people in my workplace have graduated from the same program that I am in and they’ve given me some advice on how to handle the work load.
I also found that using my tech has helped a lot in my studies. I recently bought an iPad Air 3 for school. I mainly did this because I found most of my textbooks on ebook central for free and I thought it would make it easier to read them, as I don’t really like reading ebooks on my laptop.
I use my iPad to take notes in class and I love that the Apple Pencil allows me to directly write my notes digitally. I bought an app called Notability to take my notes. I’ll probably do a review on it for The Calm Yalm Review and go into more detail of it’s features. A few of my classmates were fascinated that I was able to write my notes digitally and that the app had a search feature.
Despite the massive amounts of reading, I genuinely enjoy my classes. Being surrounded by people who share the same passions makes me excited to go to class each day. My classes are discussion seminars and this helps me stay actively engaged and makes the three-hour classes fly by.
Sometimes I reflect on my journey to this moment and I find it amazing that I actually moved across the country. It has been rewarding and challenging all at the same time. I am living the dream and I look forward to see what the next two years has in store for me.