Observations and Indecision

First, a few observances I’ve had about Californian things (on the road) I don’t love.  Because 99.5% of this state and my new adventure, I LOVE… but I need to keep it real sometimes.  And please be aware, these are all completely trivial things 🙂

1. Speed bumps. My apartment complex has five. Just to get to my parking space. Forget if you want to drive any further into the place.  Annoying.

2. Lights on the on-ramps.  I just don’t understand this!  I mean, I guess it regulates traffic and helps the flow during peak times… but it’s confusing because at some places it’s one car per green and others it’s two.  Can we just have some consistency?!

3. Cars on the 5. So at home it’s either rush hour and you avoid highways like the plague, or it’s not rush hour and you can cruise/make up killer time.  Not so much here.  The 5 doesn’t really come to complete stops often, but it is never empty and hitting the speed limit can be an accomplishment.  This is really just forcing me to find side roads, which isn’t all bad.

Secondly, I have been starting to figure out what graduate school programs I want to attend and where.  This is one of the reasons I came out here, to establish residency and get cheaper tuition next fall.  That being said, I’m also not married to SD and if the dream program appears elsewhere, I could/would apply and move.  Potentially.  There are kind of two sides to my decision, or two major options.

History is the first option, because a master’s in history would allow me to teach at the community college or smaller college level in the history field.  The issue is, a few schools out here have awesome graduate programs for history where I could study Asia or World War II or anything else I have an interest in.  But most have smaller graduate programs and the major/concentration options are “Southwest U.S. History” or U.S. History in general.  Now no offense to those fields, they just don’t interest me in an academic sense like even a little bit.

The second option is a little more complicated, mainly because I just don’t know enough about the field to make an educational choice on what I need.  I have always been interested in counseling, but not in the “I’ll hold your hand while you cry” kind of way.  Instead either college counseling at the high school level, where you help kids research colleges, scholarships, summer programs, etc.  Or career/admissions counseling where I would help college students either work out their schedules or research study abroad options or figure out possible jobs and job fairs.  There just isn’t a clear degree for that.  Some jobs suggest social work, others guidance education, and a few have a career/college counseling degree… I just don’t know if that’s what I really NEED.  Some jobs just want education experience, which I already have!  Any suggestions/insight on this that any of you might have would be awesome!

And on that note, I’m off to the beach for a beach day/bonfire tonight 🙂


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kathleen
    Aug 20, 2012 @ 18:33:20

    Hi Karen…and welcome to California! You have selected a beautiful place to begin your west coast adventure, but hopefully I can entice you to the beautiful central coast and my home town of Monterey as an excursion in the future (you can fly from SD to Monterey reasonably). I can also provide some guidance as to the pathways to working as a community college or academic counselor. As this year marks my 30th in higher education, I have some war stories and success stories that I can share. I could also connect you with some of the counselors I have worked with for job shadowing or informational interviewing if that would help. Contact me at krose@gavilan.edu (work) or kathleen_rose@sbcglobal.net (home). Cell is 831-238-4399. Good luck in all your endeavors…California is a wonderful state and I’m proud to have put down roots here!



  2. Catherine W. Kelley
    Sep 13, 2012 @ 18:42:50

    Glad you are enjoying CA! I am just taking a few minutes to check out your blog and thought I would give my 2 cents worth. Your cousin, Emily Goodson, got her masters in Student Affairs from UVA, and that led to a career counseling job at WFU Business School and now recruiting college and grad school students for Deloitte. Some of her UVA classmates are working in college admissions and career counseling, but not sure about high school level. Good luck!
    Catherine White Kelley



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