“Josie! I feel like I’ve been in school FOREVER!”
I cannot tell you how many times I’ve heard that from my Ecampus students, most of whom are either returning to school after a long absence, starting a program later in life, and/or attending less than full time. It’s also one of the reasons I so enjoy working with adult distance learners.
I started college (UC Santa Cruz) at age 18, fresh out of high school. However, it took me 10 years to complete my undergraduate degree. I left college at the end of my Freshman year because I had no idea what I wanted to study or what career I wanted to follow. I had some ideas, but nothing where I felt confident enough to continue, so I left and decided to work in the hope that with time the “answer” would come to me.
I worked for a few years as a bilingual instructional aide (which led to my crossing teaching off of my career possibilities list), and then, feeling the desire to return just because I loved school so much and missed it, I transferred to UC Davis to begin my Sophomore year, still undecided (I was officially “Undeclared”). I also still needed to continue working, so for a couple of years l attended part time.
There were many times when I felt I would NEVER finish my degree. Graduation seemed eons away. But somehow I persevered, and finally, before I knew it, I was walking across the stage in my cap and gown.
So whenever you feel like you can’t keep going, just remember that we’re each on our own journey, and if you keep pushing forward you will finally complete your degree. And I’m always happy to help with a pep talk whenever you feel you need that little extra push to keep you focused and on track.