Okay, maybe “for life” is a bit of an exaggeration, but I have been an Undergrad for quite a while now. It’s nearly 5 years since I started doing Arabic, and it’ll be at least one more year until I get my Bachelor’s Degree. That’s twice as long as it “should” take, but I don’t mind. The main reason why I’m studying so slowly is that for the last 3 years I’ve been working half-time or more, and I really enjoy doing both. I can pay all my bills, I don’t need to take any student loans (I’ve even started paying back the ones I had from before I started working properly) and I can make slow and steady progress. Plus, since I work at the department where I study, I am constantly surrounded by language geekery and I can easily pop into an open lecture after work at short notice.
I don’t exactly study half-time. Rather, I study “whatever I have time for this term”-time. I try to take about 15 credits per term (30 credits is a full term), but sometimes it’s been less and sometimes more. A few weeks ago, I finished my first 7.5 credits for the term. The course was super lots of geeky fun, although I did flob the exam a tad and ended up with a C. That’s okay though, I really enjoyed it! Next week, right as Camp NaNo and this challenge ends, I start another 7.5 credit course. I failed this particular course last year and was too lazy to do complementary work. The two years before that I simply ignored the course (or rather, I kept prioritizing other courses over it). So for the sake of my pride and sanity, I really need to pass it this year. I just want it over and done with. Plus, if I don’t finish it I will have to do it next spring which means I may not have time to write my Bachelor’s thesis then which is just not an acceptable option. So cross your fingers for me on that one!
I really enjoy being a student, but I’m not hunting degrees. I enjoy my job and am not in a hurry to “make a career” (especially since the career I really want is in writing). I would like to work within my field of study some day, but it doesn’t have to be soon. Once the BA is done it’s on to the Master’s level courses and who knows how long it’ll take me to finish those two year’s worth of courses? I sure don’t, but it’ll be fun to find out!