by Carjamin Scott on July, 18, 2019 at 9:23 p.m.
There are several reasons why people get advanced degrees. Perhaps their employer encouraged them to continue their education. Maybe it’s because they will earn a pay increase based on the credential they earn. Others might use it for career advancement. Or some might want a degree for all those reasons.
As for myself, I thought that the degree would be life changing. I always admired people with professional degrees. You know, all the people whose name was Dr. so and so. It meant that person is smart. That they went to school for a long time and they learned something. That they are successful and are leaders with money, power, and influence. I figured that their career opportunities were endless and they are at the top of their game.
Well maybe I was wrong. Because everything I thought would happen hasn’t happened. My life didn’t change because of my degree. In fact, I’m still waiting on my pay increase, title promotion, and new job. Also, my influence is about the same. Yes, some people call me doctor but those are the same people who valued me before the degree.
Maybe that’s the lesson in all of this. Did I put too much value in this sheet of paper? But, hey this credential was not free. When am I going to get a return on my investment?
Now, I will admit that I learned a great deal about education, leadership, research, and strategic change. And I’m implementing what I’ve learned in various situations but I’m not getting paid for it.
Or am I? As I’m pondering on all of this, I’m thinking that I should I change the title to, “I’m beginning to think my Doctorate degree is priceless.” I graduated less than a year ago and since graduating I’ve accomplished a ton. It wasn’t necessarily what I thought I was going to accomplish but I feel that I’m on the right track.
I’ve earned several awards and created some strong relationships within my workplace and in the Nashville area. Here are just a few.
Yes, I want to be the person I imagined: Dr. Scott, a wife, and mom, who is well educated, and is success story that is at the top of her career. And it’s going to happen. I just have to realize that my degree was worth something and life after the degree is not the finale. It is the beginning.
Unedited Commentary Added on July 21 11:40a
For everyone who shared, texted, emailed, called, and talked with me about my latest blog post, thank you. I am grateful for my education. I worked really hard for it. I enrolled in school knowing that my ancestors fought to provide me with that opportunity. I also graduated to make my parents proud as they both only got GEDs. I also did it to instill the importance of an education to my children. Btw, my classmates will tell you, I was in school with a baby and while pregnant. Yes two young kids. I even brought my children with me to many study sessions. (I bring my kids everywhere.) I also was working full time. I’m grateful that I had the support of my husband.
But I also did it because I want to get PAID someday. Yes, I know it takes time and it won’t be easy. And yes, I got a great degree from an excellent reputable school. And yes many students, my classmates, who put in the work are getting PAID. Yes, money isn’t everything but I’m not going to turn down more. And yes I’m grateful because I do have a great job now and a great salary now. And yes, if you read the entire post, you’ll notice that I’m blooming where I’m planted. And I love my current employer very very much. You can ask any coworker about that. However, I deserve and will continue to want more for myself, even after earning my degree and work accolades. I refuse to settle for good enough when I can strive for more and better.
Again, that you for your words of encouragement. The post did exactly what I wanted it to do. Get people thinking about life after the degree and what it will take to get the ROI after the investment. It will take patience and continued work. Work that I’m willing to put in, work that I want to put in, and work that I want to use to make my community better. I love us fr, fr, and if you don’t know my true motivation for all that I do by now then I need to work harder at showing you. I hope this doesn’t discourage you from continuing your education, instead it should let you know that you have to keep working even after you get it. One more thing, to the people who are struggling with me: keep your head up. We’ve got this far for a reason and it’s going to pay off soon. You are not alone be encouraged.
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Carjamin Scott can be reached at email@example.com and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie, instagram @carjiescott, and facebook at Dr. Carjie Scott.