Student Snippets


Year 2: Ready, Set, Go!

The start of this semester marks the beginning of my second year at Simmons. It feels like I've come full circle. Last January, I was one of the brand new students at the back-to-school lunch, declaring nervously that I'd just taken my very first class, feeling simultaneously triumphant and terrified. This Saturday I was a returning student at the back-to-school lunch, conversing easily with colleagues as we chatted about break and new classes. I had the funniest feeling talking to the new students, realizing that I was in their exact spot exactly one year ago, seeing the same fresh nervousness and excitement that I had felt reflected in their eyes.

The past year has been an extremely fulfilling and challenging one for me. I've done so many things for the first time (like blogging!) and encountered so many new ideas. I've uncovered some hidden talents of my own (who knew I'd love coding so much?) and expanded the bounds of my comfort zone by tackling difficult assignments. I've taken 5 classes for 15 credits, which puts me pretty close to the halfway mark. I could conceivably finish in one more year, if I take a heavier load of classes. I've been mulling over my options and I think that's what I'd like to do.

In my introductions on Saturday I said that I was pursing the archives track, but that I was "on the fence" about it. There are a couple of reasons for this. One is that I've had some course sequencing issues for my archives classes (being able to take the prerequisite courses first). SLIS West is obviously a much smaller campus than Boston and therefore the course offerings are more limited. It's true that they offer all of the classes for the archives concentration, but since I started in the spring, the courses haven't been offered in the order that I needed to take them. So I'm almost halfway through my program and I've only had ONE of my archives classes (and I had to take it online!). This semester I'm taking two more non-archives classes, which means that in order to complete the archives track I'll have to load up the rest of my program with basically all archives courses.

The other thing I'm conflicted about is the opportunity cost - the awesome library courses I'll miss out on by choosing archives instead. If I had unlimited time and money I'd honestly stay in school until I had taken every class that sounded interesting to me. Since I can't do that responsibly, I've got to decide which ones are the most important, or the best-suited to my professional goals. As with life, grad school is a choose-your-own-adventure. And I'm just not sure I'm ready to choose archives and turn to page 58 (those books drove me crazy by the way!).

I'm super DUPER excited for my classes this semester: Academic Libraries and Database Management. I've got a wonderful, optimistic feeling about both of them and I'm expecting them to help me decide which path I take for the rest of my program. So stay tuned for more about why I'm excited for these, and for why my technology courses have been the biggest "happy surprise" of grad school so far.