Half-a-versaries and grad school…. what?!

So much is happening this week! I’m not even in school and I can feel the stress of the holiday season. This weekend we have two parties to attend, one of which we still need to buy for. Next week, things should calm down somewhat. Aaron will be working half-days and we don’t have tutoring for the next two weeks; just conferences and testing. While my paycheck come the first of January will suck, at least I get to enjoy my time off with my husband.

Speaking of whom… December 21 is our 3.5-year anniversary (of our church ceremony. November 16 was the “technical” 3.5 year thing.) I know, it’s almost as lame as celebrating a half birthday. But hey.. we’re that much closer to four years. After December 21 I can now say that “we’ve been married for going on four years”. This is our NINTH Christmas together. Uhhhh. Where the heck did time go?!

Guess what I heard from someone who just got on at one of the districts here? He told me that for many positions there are 300 applicants. 300. Reeedonkulous. Sigh. I’m having a hard time believing that after I shell out upwards of $400 for my tests that Texas wants me to retake that I’ll be the lucky winner of a teaching job here. It also took this fella two years, yes, TWO, to land this job. We’ll be here three, probably four years total, and I’m not willing to sit around and see if I can get a job, only to leave in one or two years.

My next plan of attack is to get accepted to the University of Texas at El Paso to start my Master’s degree in linguistics. There are two specializations I could do: applied linguistics and Hispanic linguistics. According to our ever-reliable Wikipedia, applied linguistics is “interdisciplinary field concerned with real-world language issues”.

Sounds like fluff, huh? Not so much. Examples of class titles within this degree are Psycholinguistics and Reading, Teaching Second Language Composition, Bilingualism, Phonology, Computer-Assisted Language Learning, Pedagogical Issues in English Structure, etc. With this degree I will gain knowledge of teaching ESL and bilingual students. If I go the Hispanic linguistics route, I would probably have enough hours in Spanish to teach at the community college level. I can’t deciiiide!

In my opinion, this is a much more useful degree for me at this juncture than one in education, and more enjoyable. Blech. I think out of all my undergrad classes, education classes were my least favorite, excluding the middle school courses taught by an amazing professor who is now a superintendent. Most of the time we did fluffy group projects that did not prepare us, or at least me, for teaching in the real world. I did learn a lot in my secondary assessment class, where I learned how to write and structure tests. Anyyywayyyy.

My ultimate career goal is to be a professor. (Did I ever tell you that?) I’m not too concerned about being full-time… I just want to be able to teach, and teach what I love: Spanish and language. I love grammar, syntax, phonology. It’s all so interesting and applicable to every language. Another job that would be awesome would be a reading or language specialist in a school. I just can’t pry myself away from linoleum hallways filled with little humans who are ready to skip class learn. Just can’t.

I would like to start classes in the summer, if possible. I’m also going to apply for an assistantship. Being a TA would be a good experience, I think. I’ll at least be eight years older than college freshmen….. :shiftyeyes: I wouldn’t mind tutoring in the writing center, either. I mean, I have a way with words. Not quite sure what that way is besides loquacious, but whatevz. I also would LOVE to take some elementary Arabic classes… not sure if they’re open to grad students though.

Since I graduated from Bradley, I’ve probably applied to three or four grad programs. I was accepted to ISU’s Spanish grad program, but obviously never went. I also considered school counseling. But, this time… I think it’s really gonna happen!

(In case you were wondering, my #1 reason for going back to school is to wear one of those weird robes that has a hood and really really flow-y sleeves at graduation. Just so we clear that up.)

Folks, it’s only a matter of time before I get a brand-spankin’-new planner and UTEP shirt & car decal. Watch out.

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