On Saturday mornings you’ll find the typical graduate student one of two places: on his or her way to the AU library to get a head start on their studies or more likely in bed until 10am recovering from their late night of “studying” the evening before. But I have a confession to make: I am not the typical graduate student. On Saturday at 8:30am I jump on the orange line metro over to Foggy Bottom to greet a class full of teenage girls in their leotard and tights ready to hit the ballet bar. I am a full time MBA with a part time job.
Now before I gripe too much, I must admit that I have a pretty great job for someone, such as myself, who loves all things artistic. I spend my Wednesdays and Saturdays at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts managing a dance residency program for the Dance Theatre of Harlem. While my fellow classmates are meeting with their group mates or studying for the upcoming exam, I’m in Rehearsal Room 7 of the KC ushering 100 prima donnas to their ballet class and making sure our day runs smoothly. While my job may be slightly more enjoyable that the average 9-5, I must admit that working during Kogod’s full time MBA program is much more to handle than I ever expected.
As soon as I had my fall schedule, I began my job search. I have always been the typical type A personality who enjoys being busy 23 out of the 24 hours in a day, so working during my schooling seemed like an obvious choice. When the position at the KC opened up it seemed as if it was destined for me: a part time position in one of the finest performing arts establishments in America. How could I not love this? But even in my first week of the program I started seeing how that “free time” has a way of filling up pretty fast. First it was peer learning groups, then it was extra class meetings in the financial lab, next it was Saturday review sessions and somewhere in between all of this I was supposed to meet with my group members. I began to feel like I was drowning and the more I began to drown the more I resented my choice to work. Now, don’t get me wrong, the feeling I get when I see that lovely paycheck in my mailbox every other week is nothing less than what a four year old feels on Christmas morning, however it comes at a price. I find myself wondering, if I had the extra 16 hours to study for Accounting would my A- have bumped up to an A? Who knows, but working during the full time program is definitely something to think long and hard about. Each person is different but in this program a part time job also means sacrifices and the need for plenty of time management. For me, I make it work, but there isn’t a Saturday I wake up, look back at my big comfy bed, and regret being a Type A overachiever.