Bottom line, the first week of class was great.
But then again, I was always one of those weird kids for whom the first day/week/month of school was my favorite time of the year. New teachers, new material, new friends… everything new and exciting and interesting.
I’m delighted to find that my joy for going back to school hasn’t diminished, even as I hit my 29th birthday. I was a little worried it might, considering how disillusioned I was after graduating from college.
Tuesday Night – BUSN 6530 – Data Analysis for Managers
This class went a lot better than expected, despite the fact that the professor has a pretty thick accent. The only thing I really thought I knew about statistics was what I (vaguely) remembered from “Functions, Statistics, and Trigonometry” my sophomore year of high school. (Which was… wow, fourteen years ago. Holy crap.) I remember thinking it was really, really hard, and that it didn’t matter if I wasn’t any good at it, because I was never going to need it.
Turns out that’s a pretty common conception, and the prof told us that, as a statistician and our teacher, it was his job to prove to us that statistics was not hard (although he didn’t say easy so…), we could be good at it, and it was very relevant to us as business students.
I’ll be curious to see how class goes.
Oh, and the best bit? I made a friend! Her name is Lynn and she’s around my mom’s age (she has a daughter who’s my age). It’ll be fun to see how that goes, too.
Wednesday Night – BUSN 6540 – Legal and Ethical Environment of Business
… or, as I will probably refer to it, my “law class.”
The instructor for this class is actually a practicing lawyer and this is her only class she teaches. I really like the way she sets up her classes and presents her notes. She makes it really easy to understand the implications that law has for us as individuals and potential business managers, and I feel like I’ve learned so much, just in the two and a half hours of class that we’ve had so far.
Thursday Night – BUSN 6550 – Analyzing and Interpreting Accounting Information
I’ve been calling this class “Accounting for Business Majors” in my head, but that’s a little long to write, so I’ll probably just call it my “accounting class.” Once I actually start taking accounting classes, I’ll have to figure out different monikers for them, but for now, since I’m only taking the one, and it’s really actually a business class.
I was surprised to realize as I sat down in class on Thursday that my heart was racing and my palms were sweaty. I really had no cause to be nervous. I mean, I wasn’t giving a presentation or anything; it was the first day of class. But there I was, exhibiting all the signs of nervousness. If I had to guess, I would say it was because if I was bad at this class, or didn’t enjoy it, this whole “go back to school to become an accountant” plan would be a bit moot.
Granted, I took (part of) that Fundamentals of Accounting course in the spring, and enjoyed it, but I didn’t get as far in the textbook as I had wanted, and I didn’t get far enough to really start exploring the accounting software that was provided with that text so… I’m still a little unsure if this is really the thing for me. I think it is. I want it to be. But that was likely the cause of my nervousness. The uncertainty that remains.
It turns out I really had nothing to be nervous about. The class talks about accounting at a pretty basic level (yay!), so I’m not completely lost. I think the biggest frustration so far is that the teacher’s instructional style and my note-taking style don’t really mesh, which means there will be a learning curve for taking notes in class, as well as for the material presented. It’ll be fine though. I’m really motivated to do well in this class, which I’m sure will help.
The most exciting thing? The instructor used to be a CPA working for a Big 4 accounting firm, and I asked her after class if she’d be willing to talk to me about how that might work, and she said sure.
The rest of the week — The weekend and the in-between times
I actually did a really good job of staying on top of my homework, which is one of the things I’m most worried about, because I’ve been pretty bad about procrastination in the past. As I was telling my dad though, the nice thing about going back to school is that you know all of the pitfalls and have (hopefully) learned ways to avoid them.
- I read my textbooks on the bus, to and from work.
- I did my assignments on the schedule I set myself, and not the night before they were due.
- I even set up a good study schedule for myself on my otherwise “free” weekends. 25 minutes of reading/homework, 15 minutes of break (usually involves cleaning of some kind, especially on the weekends). Repeat. I set a timer for each phase, and I allow myself to keep going if I’m on a roll with studying, but I make sure to stop my break time after the allotted 15 minutes.
My general goal is to have all of my homework done for each class by the Sunday before the next week of classes. That will give me Monday night “off” to spend with Ben (if he’s around), or give me Monday night to finish up any last things I wasn’t able to get done for whatever reason. This seems to have worked so far, but I’ll keep an update as to how it’s going.