I really really want to attend graduate school. It is one of the very few things that I am very sure I want to do in my life. Then what stops me from getting what I want? Financial constraints.
It’s not that my parents are not willing to send me to school. My father actually bugs me all the time whether I want to pursue further studies. His original idea was to get me attend law school, which also made me think honestly. After he told me that I should continue studying, I received an invitation from our university’s faculty of civil law. That was confusing because never in my life had I foreseen myself becoming a lawyer. I openly told my father, however, that I am interested in taking up a master’s degree program.
My mother, on the other hand, did not completely approve or disapprove my desire for further studies. She just told me that times can get hard, and it’s better to save up money for myself, which technically means I have to work my ass off, first. Considering that there’s not much money in my chosen field of endeavor, in case I ended up really living out what my course has taught me. My mother was right. In fact, people around me told me that it’d better and more rewarding if I finance my own studies. When I talked to my Uncle who is living in Canada, he told me that I should really study again. Same as with my godfather-slash-high school teacher-slash cousin. But he told me to get stable, save up for further studies, and reach for my MA dreams.
After I graduated last March, I was not yet fully decided on this matter. Actually, I thought of applying to jobs and if I get hired, I’d rather work. During my senior year in college, my broadcast journalism class and other major subjects gave me this desire to work on a television network – something I never thought during my early college years. So there, I applied to all three major television networks, looked for openings, too in other small networks. But as of writing time, not one from them got in touch. In fact, I’m dreading to hear from them. And sometimes, it frustrates me because some of my batch mates already got in… thus this intense feeling of insecurity. Not insecurity in the jealous sense, though. I feel insecure for my future. Where do I go from here?
It’s not that I don’t want to try the print media. I pretty much enjoyed working as a student-reporter during my internship. Although I wasn’t given the chance to work real-time, with news beats, and day-by-day deadlines, I was able to gain a lot of lessons from my internship. It’s just that, when I was a senior, I was sure that I’d like to work in news programs. And it was so bad I almost shut myself from other options. In the end, I realized, I’ll end up forever unemployed if I don’t explore other options. I applied to different companies – SEO, hospital, manufacturing, and banks among others. But whenever I look back to my decision to apply to those companies, my heart aches. Because I really want to get into broadcast badly. Well, I don’t really want to be a news anchor, but I want to work behind-the-scenes. That is my thing. I may not be the cover girl, but I am the girl who can cover everything. Oh and yes, I tried some publishing companies, too.
While my entry-level application starts to get rough, and sometimes I honestly feel hopeless, my desire to continue studying is still strong. I still want it. I can actually beg my parents to send me to school. But I get it. I will be too selfish if I do so. My two brothers are still in college. My younger sister is about to enter college, and she didn’t make it to UST (which means there is no scholarship. Which means my parents have to pay for her studies in full. Which means expensive. Which means it’s tightening-the-belt period again). My youngest sister is about to enter high school, and yes, part of the batch who will pioneer K +12, which means my parents, again, have to shed more money to support her extended high school education. So I finished college, with the help of my parents’ profession benefits… and if I decide to attend graduate school, that profession benefits couldn’t cover it. It means we need more and more and more money.
I finished my preschool in a low-paying school. It just started when we entered so tuition wasn’t that high. I attended elementary in a public school, so besides the regular PTA (Parents and Teachers Association) fee which amounts to around 600 pesos to 1000 pesos, and many costly school projects, my parents did not really pay for my education. That’s public school, no tuition, only tons of miscellaneous fees. I was a scholar in high school because my mother is a high school teacher, and the same case during college since my father is a college instructor… for 20+ years. So, while the miscellaneous fees and other fees of my high school and college education remain to be costly, the tuition fee deduction was of great help. Otherwise, I don’t know how our family will survive.
But I am still hopeful. I actually checked certain universities’ and institutions’ graduate school programs and I found certain programs that interested me a lot. Probably, I’ll take one up someday.. someday soon.
As of now, I’ll probably look for a decent job, then live half-heartedly in the real world. While I am not sure what entry-level job I want, I am sure of two things: one, I really want to get my post-graduate degree and I really want to become a journalist. I’ll probably send my applications to some broadsheets one of these days. This desire to study again and to pursue my chosen career path… it is so intense.
Did I mention that I also want to be a professor? Well, I want to teach journalism. I come to love it really especially during my last two years in college and I really want to be like my professors. They are just so smart, knowledgeable, critical-minded and inspiring. I really dream to be like them someday. One of my friends to whom I shared my MA and teaching dreams told me that journalism professors are better when they are practitioners, that’s why I really want to be a journalist… and a professor… and of course, a post-graduate degree holder. Hah. Dreams. Dreams.
Well, I don’t know if these aspirations will still exist after a year or so. But as of now, they are as vivid my book collection (I just happen to look up and notice their colors, and arrangement). For the mean time… I guess I’ll try to land a job and start my little steps toward my big dreams. 🙂