8 April 2018 – Do I want to be a student again?
I thought about it this morning. The last time I had to sit in a classroom or deal with grades was 1985. That is right, more than 30 years ago. I still have not touched my post 9-11 GI Bill. All except for Miriam have aged out of eligibility. When she and Noah were eligible, they first were using their VA benefits. End result is that I have up to 36 months of educational benefits which will expire in 2021 shortly after my passport will expire. Not that the two have exactly anything to do with each other but that will be the 10 year mark since I retired from the Army.
Apparently now benefits have to be used in 15 years, but I don’t think that change is retroactive. And in any case, giving me another five years just means that I will be five years older. It is a good change and will benefit those who retired at 20 years with small children in the house. Benefits won’t expire before those children have a chance to benefit.
But me? Do I want to let the whole things go? Or do I want to go back to school. And since I already have three degrees, what do I really want with another degree.
Given all of that, I have been looking at University California, Hastings Law School. No – I have absolutely no interest in becoming a lawyer – one of those in the family is more that enough, thank you. But they have a Masters of Studies in Law program that might be interesting. It is designed for health care, tech and public policy types who need to understand the law (in order to use/abuse it). I applied on a lark,, sort of. Like any other application process it was a pain. Paying the application fee wasn’t the issue, it was working myself up to asking a couple of friends for recommendations and getting copies of all transcripts sent to the school. That is right, all transcripts. Apparently it has something to do with having completed files for accreditation inspections and qualifications. I am not sure how relevant an undergraduate transcript from the late 60s is, but obviously, my opinion on that item wasn’t asked. At least both U of MN and Johns Hopkins can send everything secure electronically and I didn’t have to wait for the mail (and cheaper. Nice.)
They are willing to have me start in the fall. In fact, fall starts are mandatory since they offer certain required courses only in the fall.
This is going to play havoc with both my professional meeting schedule and the fall transatlantic cruise season.
There was an alternative through Hastings-UCSF in Health Policy as an on-line course, but if I am going to do this, I think that in person would be better.
Besides, once I get through, I will help them restructure so that the course is more interning to the working person for whom it is designed. No one who is working full time can take out 1-2 years for a degree. The MBA programs have figured this out and just about all offer night/weekend extended options for the mid-career professional.
Just what I need – a new windmill upon which to tilt!