I don't like to put too many personal details on this blog, but it's going to become obvious that something is different over the summer. No, I'm not pregnant, thank goodness.
The story started over winter break when I was in Okinawa for a research field trip to gather information for my thesis, which was mostly written at that point. My thesis director informed me, out of the blue, that I hadn't gotten approval from some board that was necessary for working with humans subjects, even though all I wanted to do was interview them and I had already asked many people who had agreed to participate-- most of whom, I might add, were very enthusiastic about my project. She told me that since this wasn't done, that I was not to conduct any interviews because even if I did, the board wouldn't- and she wouldn't- let me use them to finish my thesis. No matter that I had funded the whole thing on my own dime since I could not get funding from the school because of budget cuts. She said I would go back the following year, and there was plenty of time since I am now a Ph.D. candidate anyway.
I was set to graduate with my M.A. and TESOL certificate this May until that point, which was the track my director had put me on. I had been doing my program for the past year and a half with a part-time assistantship, no tuition waiver, and working an additional part-time job to make ends meet while taking a full schedule. Even when I was admitted as a Ph.D. candidate in the fall, I was not offered additional funding. And since I've already taken out the maximum amount of student loans that my university approves for graduate students (which is much lower than the government has approved me to borrow, but that's beside the point), after this semester school is not an option for me. Especially in light of K's hours getting cut at work due to the lovely economy.
Since winter break, I've been grappling with the fact that I will not be graduating this year or possibly ever since grad school credits are only good for a few years, even though my GPA is 3.85 and I graduated from undergrad with a 3.88 and from high school with a 3.9. Not to mention volunteer work, clubs, and working part-time and summers during those times. Sorry, but it's hard not to be bitter about it.
K and I have thought long and hard about what we can possibly do since his job seems to be little more than a sinking ship and I can't find any full-time positions that pay more than minimum wage in our area, and forget about benefits. Gardening is really therapeutic in times like this.
Well, we came to a decision about what we should try to do. We've been working on it for the past couple of months, and now it seems that the wheels are definitely in motion. Here it is.
This summer, K and I are moving to South Korea.
The best jobs that we can find are in Korea. Pretty amazing, huh? Well, at least it will be a great adventure. I'm excited and nervous and scared and happy all at once. This is the second time in my life that I'll have moved abroad. I'm so happy that this time I won't be alone. It'll be so much fun to explore a new place with K.
I'm hoping that in a couple of years I can save up enough money to come back and finish the last 6 credit hours of my M.A., or even try to do it from a distance while still in Korea. It's not an ideal situation, I know. But this is the best financial move that we can make right now. And I'm trying to make the best of it. I mean, I love Korean food, Japan is just a stone's throw from Korea, and I get to learn a new language! (Yes, that's a positive for a linguistics nerd like me :) )
This week we're starting the process of gathering visa documents. Just about four months to go at this point. So if you've ever been to Korea or know much about it, I'm open to any and all advice!
In the meantime, check out some of the steals I found at Easter weekend sales. Were the sales not amazing this year?!
Definitely minimal hair, makeup, and even clothing today-- 91 on Easter, good lord! Sorry if my pasty skin offends you :)
Total cost of this outfit: $40. Love it!!
By the way, my city is covered in wisteria these days. It's so beautiful! I've never lived anywhere else where it grows wild everywhere. It smells like heaven in the evening. Is your city or town in full bloom too?
romper - New York & Co. / sandals - Payless / necklace - JC Penney