Back to School, Back to School

Posted on Aug 26, 2008

I have started back to school again. For those of you who donâa‚¬a„¢t know I have tried school a bundle of times. I started out, like most kids, right after high school. I was going to go to Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO. For some reason I cannot remember at this time I didnâa‚¬a„¢t end up going there. I think I didnâa‚¬a„¢t know what I wanted to do in college and so I didnâa‚¬a„¢t want to move away from my friends and family. I really did know what I wanted to do; it just wasnâa‚¬a„¢t a major at any college I could find. I wanted to be a clown.

After cancelling on Fort Lewis I enrolled at the University of Northern Colorado as an elementary education major, since that is what everyone said I would be good at. Since my heart wasnâa‚¬a„¢t in to what I was studying I failed spectacularly. I failed so well you might even say that I was a successful failure. I dropped out after a semester and a half completing all of about three classes.

After that experience I thought that maybe I just wasnâa‚¬a„¢t meant for the big school experience and would just go to Aims Community College, get my associates degree and then head back for a bachelorâa‚¬a„¢s degree. Once again I went through the whole: What do I want to do? Who do I want to be? I still didnâa‚¬a„¢t know, well I knew that I wanted to be a clown but that still didnâa‚¬a„¢t fit into any given major. Since I didnâa‚¬a„¢t know what I wanted to be or what I wanted to do I failed again.

I quit going to Aims, failing my third quarter classes with flying colors and feeling quite stupid. I was still living at home and it was killing me inside to have to go home and hear how good my brother was doing at college, how successful he was and all that gunk. I needed to get out of there. So I started the internet research.

Of all the possibilities I researched, commercial dive school appealed to me the most. I have been a SCUBA diver since I was 15 or so and have always been fascinated with the underwater world. I applied to the College of Oceaneering and lo and behold I was accepted. I was excited, about school. It was confusing and awesome at the same time.

It was about that time that I started this blog. Feel free to peruse the first year of entries to get an idea of what school was like as well as what went on in my life. A brief summary goes a little something like this. I kicked a lot of butt at school, became thankful I didnâa‚¬a„¢t join the Navy out of high school, made some really good friends, got engaged, lived on my own in Compton, CA, learned a whole bunch about diving and then to top it all off I came back to Coloradoâa‚¬Â¦ where there are a lot of Oceansâa‚¬Â¦ stupid geography.

There I was hanging out in Colorado, living with my folks again and starting to become unhappy. It was about that time that I tricked my beautiful wife, then fiancÃÂ(C), into letting me move in with her. Youâa‚¬a„¢ll have to ask her how that happened, because I am still not sure how it worked. If her parents ask just tell them that I always slept on the couch. I became happier, working my job as a welding inspector and coming home to Sarah every night. Life was good-ish.

I wasnâa‚¬a„¢t exactly proud of myself or of very much I had accomplished in life. I still felt the need to go back to school and get that ever important degree. I wondered for about six or seven years looking for a chance or excuse to go back to school. It has finally happened.

It all started last January when I took College Algebra, the bane of my previous college attempts. It is not that I donâa‚¬a„¢t like math it is just that math doesnâa‚¬a„¢t like me. I understand math, it is just so boring. Well I am happy to say that in May of 2008 I successfully got a âa‚¬ËoeCâa‚¬a„¢ in College Algebra. I was on my way. Over that summer I took Ethnic Literature and Spanish 1. I passed them both, with an âa‚¬ËoeAâa‚¬a„¢ and a âa‚¬ËoeBâa‚¬a„¢. It was crazy.

I felt, and still feel, good about myself. I am in danger of doing well in school for the first time in my academic life. I am studying, learning and having a really good time. I wouldnâa‚¬a„¢t change what I did prior to coming back to school for anything, though I wish I would have finish all of that stuff quicker. I am running into some interesting situations at school. I am not the oldest student in my classes; most of the older students are over forty and are changing careers by going back to school. The majority of the other students are eighteen years old.

I am the Green Kangaroo. I am in the middle of these to age groups. I have a hard time identifying with the younger students due to the almost ten year gap in our ages, but I am young enough looking that they assume that I am their age. . I have a harder time talking to the students who are older than me because I am perceived as being one of the young ones. On top of that I find most of the older students frustrating to work with because of their refusal to believe that I might know what I am talking about when it comes to in class work.

I know that there has to be other students out there that are in a similar boat. These posts are for you. Also if you are over twenty four and under thirty two and thinking about going back to school; I hope that I can provide some insight into the world of college as an older but not ancient student. Well wish me luck, classes have started and I am ready to get started with my first full time semester at school in about five or six years.