The Transition from Working Life to Student Life

October 1, 2015

Wow, I can’t believe just over a third of the semester is over. My transition has been so good. I worked for two years after receiving my Bachelor degree, and it has definitely been (and still is) a transition coming back to the academic world. I see myself reacting to the same things differently than I did before working – perhaps I’ve simply grown up.

Whatever the reason, here are three things I miss about work life. For those of you in the same boat as me (I know you’re out there!), maybe some of them sound familiar:

The Income and No Homework – Since these are statements of the obvious, they don’t get the honor of being their own bullet points. Sure, I had to bring work home sometimes, but I could choose when and how much. Most importantly, my performance wasn’t graded. Regarding income, well, no further explanation is necessary.

The Discipline – My schedule was fixed but my job was dynamic so I focused every day, every week, every quarter to make sure I stayed on top of my priorities and goals. When I was at work, things got done. It’s easier to focus now after having worked in the industry, but I confess I’ve given into the temptation of watching Netflix, sleeping in or hanging out during the week more often than I should. Part of me misses that full day schedule, but not on my no-class Fridays!

The Comfort – I was in the zone at work. I felt comfortable in my role, with my colleagues, and with the job. I enjoyed it, but now I’m constantly a little uncomfortable. I’m uncertain about how I did on homework assignments or if I’m studying enough. I have to jog my memory on how gas exchange in the lungs works, or how to do a Laplace transform for an LRC circuit. As a Master’s student, I want to be a Master of what I’m doing, but right now I feel like a Novice. Engineering being what it is, that feeling may never change, but hopefully I’ll soon become more comfortable with it.

I look forward to the adventure of being back in school, but I am also nervous about the intellectual challenge ahead! I’ll keep you posted.

Published on October 1st, 2015

Last updated on August 28th, 2017