Go to grad school, they said. It would be fun, they said.
Well, guess what. I did start my graduate studies, and it is NOT fun. Nah, I’m totally overreacting.
I am currently taking up Master of Management in Business Management (MM BM) still in my beloved University of the Philippines Los Baños. Aside from this being a requirement for tenure, I also really really really want to start my own business in the future, and I want to have a strong background in that. Among other Masters Degrees in UPLB, the MM program requires applicants to take the MM Midyear Program to gauge if they are ready for the regular semester. If you pass the MM Midyear Program, you get accepted either as a regular graduate student or a probationary student. If you fail the midyear program, you can try again next year.
The midyear program by the way, is a four week program designed to make us learn, make new friends, and of course—suffer. You work from Monday to Friday and the classes are on Saturdays and Sundays, whole day. You then have to take exams the following Friday. The lessons are about management, case analysis, accounting, and mathematics/statistics for management. Let me tell you, during those four weeks, I was wreck. I was torn between my eagerness to learn and my fear of failing. And then there’s also my fear of math.
Thankfully, I got through and made it as a regular student. Yay! I did make new friends and my other batchmates are all smart, friendly, and helpful.
I am just in my third week of graduate school, and I am already exhausted. I must admit though, I thought this would be easy since I am only taking two subjects both scheduled on Saturdays so that I can also still focus on my work during the weekdays. I thought that a one-week break from each class would give me ample time to rest and study. I have heard horror stories about grad school, but the optimist in me told me that I can finish grad school with flying colors! Yay.
But I thought wrong.
Really, I have said this a number of times over a number of years, but for a long time now, I have not been okay with only 24 hours a day. I admit I lack focus because I am easily distracted by a lot of things. Also, because I want to maintain my social and family life—the ever cliché work-life balance thing.
Time goes by so fast. I plan to finish my readings or at least review my notes at least twice a week. Then I realize it’s Thursday already and I haven’t read a thing for my classes! Then I proceed to read and I realize that I need more time. The chapters are long, the lessons complicated, the numbers jumbled up in my head.
I have definitely underestimated graduate school. I also don’t think it will be any different if I’m a full time student since if I go full time, I’ll be taking more units anyway.
So I’m just three weeks in and I already feel these things. It’s better I guess, because as early as now I can figure out a way to adjust my habits, schedules, etc.
I’m sure that finishing grad school will be another major accomplishment—and that’s what I’m looking forward to. That is my motivation. I will not be some person who gave up mid-way. I don’t give up on the things I really want. And I want to march on that stage wearing an ecru dress and a sablay.
So let’s do this grad school!