Today basically determines whether I graduate or not. Time for the dreaded comprehensive exam. Ok, so I’m not really dreading it, and honestly I’m not really stressed, freaked out, or anxious. Maybe I should be. It’s nothing like the picture below, it’s nothing written (other an outline for my own benefit). It’s an oral discussion per say on a topic of my choice, with my advisor and a faculty member of my choice. It’s really more of a mix of excitement and worry for the next step. Not counting preschool, I have sat in classrooms at desks, done homework, and written papers for 18.5 years. 18.5 years!!! REALLY?! If you sit and think about it, it is kind of ridiculous that it takes that long for your life to really get started. Granted, I took an extra step by staying in school for my Master’s degree, but still….
However, with this day comes a great relief and more anxiety. I began the job search over a month ago. Yes, I know it’s a bad economy, awful job market, blah blah blah. But it is still frustrating as hell to find a job. In my case, I am mainly looking for research positions. And there are plenty. But I really wish someone would explain to me why I am not getting interviews, when I meet or exceed the posted requirements and have experience in most or all of the job description.
I do, however, have a second job interview with an organization in Atlanta. It would be a great company to work for and the job wouldn’t be bad at all…..for 2-3 years. At this point, I have to look to a longer future, even just 3-5 years down the road. And right now, 3-5 years from now will be looking at Ph.D. programs in pediatric medical psychology. This, the only job I have had even one interview for, would do nothing for me in the way of preparing for and being competitive in applying for Ph.D. programs. I realize in this market that a job is a job. But at the same time, I have to think about the future and where I want to be personally. I have no idea if I even have a chance of getting a job offer from this organization (we haven’t met each other or talked in person yet, which will be a big determining factor). I just hope that my family and friends will be supportive in whatever choice I have to make (if I even have to make one).
But that is a worry for another day. Focus on one thing at a time (says the running dialogue in my head). For now…get through my comps and graduate. Wish me luck! (I just realized I didn’t even plan to celebrate in any way……hmmm…..)