It’s a sign…

Right about now my kids would be groaning.  I used to always see signs.  I am much more particular about what qualifies as a sign now, but this almost seems to qualify…

Over at The Edjurist there was  a post with links to lots of different things, including a discussion about whether or not to start a PhD program.  This is something I have been thinking about off and on for years, but it has really seemed like a good idea lately.  I have been investigating programs and have yet to find the one I really want — whatever that might be.

The reasons not to get a doctorate are many.  Who would really want to go through all that if they didn’t have to?  But there are many reasons why I would like to do it anyway.

One reason is that working at a university without one, which I do, is not fun.  I am not eligible to apply for certain grants.  I am constantly reminded of my lower status (and therefore, value).  The funding for my program was pulled by the state  even before the current financial crisis.  At the time they thought they would be able to get it back again.  Now they say there is not a chance in the world.  They say they are going to find money to keep it open, but I am not completely convinced that will happen if the economic problems continue beyond 2009.  If I had a doctorate, I would, theoretically at least, have an easier time finding another position if this one ends.

Another reason is that I love the idea of learning.  I know I don’t need to do a doctorate to learn, but there is something different about learning in a class.  Or maybe learning where I am forced to learn things I don’t necessarily think I want to learn but end up being grateful for later.

I don’t have a lot of money (read that “any” money) to do this.  That is a good reason not to do it.  And I am old — 58 — too old to ever make the cost of a doctorate back in my earnings.  Maybe too old to ever really use it.  But it is something I think about doing, and something that I think I should do because I keep wanting to.

So I think I will look at some options more seriously again.  Who knows?  I may even do it someday!


2 thoughts on “It’s a sign…

  1. If you are doing a PhD for learning that seems a good reason. Financially, at our age, I am the same age as you, it doesn’t make a lot of sense. Our situations are almost the opposite. I have a PhD but teach in a community college where it is not needed. It makes me a little more money but almost kept me from getting the job. I still enjoyed the experience and would repeat it knowing now it wouldn’t make me much more money.

  2. Thanks for the link to the PhD discussion. I left a comment there as to why I want to pursue one. The writing exercise helped to clarify my purpose.

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