Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Back to School!

After a rather short break, my summer quarter classes begin this week. I'm just taking two classes; one is an elective, a literature course on minority ethnic writers. The other will be a sociology course, the first I've ever taken in that discipline, on the causes of social inequality. So, a summer filled with a lot of reading and socioeconomic injustice. I'm looking forward to it! And since the one class is online and the other meets at the satellite campus nearer to my house, I won't have to be commuting nearly as much for the next few months. It's looking like a golden summer, and the first summer I've ever spent the majority of somewhere other than my hometown. It's good to be here, and good to be busy. As I commented to Zeo earlier, I really am happiest when I am in a class or two; undirected relaxation just makes me listless.

Meanwhile, still trying to make things happen on my thesis. I have a professor who has expressed willingness to consider my topic, but we've had trouble actually getting the ball rolling, which concerns me a bit since I'm still hoping to graduate next Spring, but also really want to go for the thesis option if I can. If I cannot, there is plenty of time to throw the comprehensive exam side of things together if necessary, so I'm not concerned about that. I'm more worried that the thesis topic will be approved, but not in time to graduate on schedule. In debt up to my ears, and looking to sign on for several years of a PhD program, that would not be an optimal situation.

But hopefully all that will work out. Meanwhile, I've been plunging into the primary research, and boy is it fun! Stumbled across the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion, which has a mostly sociological focus but is topically right up my alley and publishes what looks like a fantastic academic journal. They were offering a two-year student membership for less than thirty dollars, so I signed up. Would not mind going to their annual conference in October, and it would be a good way to network with some of the people I might need to know to make the PhD thing fly, but I'm not seeing a trip to Milwaukee in my future. Old story!

That's all for today! Happy Midsummer everyone!

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