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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

School Daze

Every so often, I think about going back to school.

Having no degree has in a few instances shut off jobs from me, which is irritating as I've shipped more commercial products than most degreed folks.  It likely wouldn't make me more money at this point in my career, but it could open more doors.

There are a plethora (today's vocabulary word) of issues, though.

First and foremost is TIME.  Now, while I can free up some time in the evening and on weekends this will cut into my writing time and decompression time from work.  I could find a part-time job and do that to free up more time with a serious dent in my income, a hazard if anything bad should happen to me.  Which leads me to...

MONEY.  If I went to a physical school, that would take hours off of my work week and drop my income.  The least expensive accredited online school I can find is $960 a course.  Going to UT would set me back about $12K PER SEMESTER (!!).   If I banked about $100K I could probably get my degree in 3 years of insanely hard work, but then I'm 3 years behind on technology AND 3 years older AND broke.

Last, but not least, is.. REASON.  After a long hard look back, I've been turned away by HR because I don't have a degree - before even reaching a manager - about 8 times in the past 10 years.  That's way down in the statistical noise.  Being a contractor, almost every employer I've spoken to was interested in one thing: production.  Can I produce? Will I fit? Do I have the necessary skills? If yes on all 3, I get the job.  Degree? Not necessary.  So why on Earth am I considering such a thing?

Well, I've been thinking about a non-Computer Science degree, like a BFA in Creative Writing.  This would serve my career change well.. if I want to write for someone else as a living (which I really don't).  Will a BFA help me sell more books?  Unlikely.  Will it teach me anything I can't teach myself?  Again, unlikely.

Bottom line is: forget it.  It's not worth the overall cost vs. the return on investment. The money is better spent on focused classes, seminars, private tutoring and lots of self-study courses.

Of course, I'll go through all this angst again next year.. feh!

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