So you have a degree, now what?

First off, I wanted to apologize for the NON-BLOGGING I’ve been doing. I have many excuses for why, but we’ll just skip those for now. Also, please set aside any college favoritism and competitiveness (i.e. BYU sucks, my school’s better etc. etc. etc.). This isn’t a post about why my school is better than yours. Now onto my message…

I grew up in Southern California. Academics came easy to me in school, so it also made me lazy ( like I would do the minimum to get an “A” ). Because I was blessed with being good at many things in school, I struggled to figure out what I wanted to study in college. I was also an excessive planner, so I wasn’t going to be the person who went into college with an undeclared major. During my last two years of high school, I was pretty active in Debate and Agriculture (what a mix!). I had a steer named Rex my senior year, and absolutely loved the idea of studying animal science. At graduation I was planning on going to CalPoly Pomona, but over the summer realized that it would be really difficult financially for my family. I also realized that I wasn’t set on animal science. So I went to community college to figure things out, and I hated myself for it. In my proud head I was thinking, “Emily, you could be at UCLA right now if you really wanted it, you graduated near the top of your class and you could do anything. How are you still living at your parents’ house, working part time at Home Depot, and going to COMMUNITY COLLEGE?” Let’s just say I needed community college because I still had a lot to learn outside of school.

Sure enough, after my two years was up, I was well on my way to getting a degree in Genetics. When it came time to transfer, I only applied to two places, BYU Provo, and Abilene Christian University in Texas. I wasn’t a super-religious person at the time, and the last two years at community college I made rebellious mistakes and hit rock bottom. Finally I decided I needed God in my life and I NEEDED to be in a good place with… less … temptations than a normal university. My mom is devout LDS and my dad very against the Church, whereas I was always on the fence. So I decided to attend BYU in hopes of forcing myself to chose sides. Best decision I ever made.

So I packed up and went to Utah, knowing that I would either love or hate the next two years of my life. Sure enough they were amazing. I continued with my genetics degree for only two more semesters and knew I needed to go a different direction. I finally received inspiration that I needed to study Latin American Studies. Random, I know. 180 degree switch. Luckily the major was pretty short, and I picked up on Spanish quickly, so I only finished a semester after the normal 4 years. And now I have my Bachelor’s degree and a constant bombardment of questions asking me, “What are you going to do with that degree?”

Well world, I’ll tell you what I’m going to do with that degree, I’m going to raise well-rounded, educated individuals in my family. I’m going to homeschool our children, and not focus on the just U.S. and European history like mainstream school does. So many children get out of high school knowing so little of the world, and without any cultural sensitivity. Not my kids. They’ll know about Pinochet as well as Hitler, Rivera and Michaelangelo, and Japanese acculturation in the U.S. and Paraguay.

Sure my degree got me a piece of paper and a couple extra lines on my resume, but what it really did is help me be a higher level thinker, and have a passion to change the world (for me it will be through my children). Isn’t that what any degree is supposed to give you?

What cool things are you doing or will be doing with your degree or education?

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2 Responses to So you have a degree, now what?

  1. Jordyn Koch says:

    I totally agree! I just told my sister-in-law (who is in school right now) last night that I never got a chance to be a full-time teacher before having a baby and staying home, and she said, “Oh my gosh, then why am I even doing this?” So Trevor and I reassured her that whether she ever works or not, it’s so important to be an educated individual, especially being the one person who will teach her children more than anyone else. 🙂

  2. Exactly, and even in every day conversations it can become quite obvious in your speech whether or not you were formally educated (whether to a Bachelor’s or not). But especially for us mothers, whether homeschooling or not, we need to be well educated to provide a good example if anything for our kids.

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