Usually I write posts about science. But today, I’m going to get personal. I’ve either had too much coffee or am looking for new ways to avoid editing what will be the capstone of my MS in cosmetic science.
I’m up late again. Sitting at my dining table to work because my desk is not big enough to handle my laptop, a myriad of books, and two three inch think binders worth of journal articles. My reference list has ballooned to over 100. And as I wearily approach completion of my second graduate degree, having worked full-time through both, I wonder, “Was is all worth it?”
Was it Worth it?
My academic pursuits began with a simple ideal. I wanted to have a career, not just a job. I also wanted to excel at that career. Being that the cosmetic industry is heavily marketing driven, I decided a business degree might be a good idea. Maybe someday I would cross over to the “dark side” and be a marketer myself, or maybe I could combine my technical skills with business skills to create what I still jokingly refer to as Kelly Cosmetics.
Benefits of an MBA
But my learning’s went far beyond marketing to managing technology development, understanding the R&D impact on supply chains, and how to navigate an organization to get things done. Group projects taught me about collaboration and presentations in nearly every class prepared me for public speaking. While it was tough studying something I knew very little about, moving out of my comfort zone allowed me to grow.
An Advanced Cosmetic Science degree
Not long after I finished the MBA, the University of Cincinnati put their cosmetic science program online. Perfect, I could also get an advanced degree that focused on my field without giving up my shoe habit!
Here’s where I went a little crazy. I could, when possible take as many classes as I wanted. And did I ever, 3 a quarter at times. Midway through the program I decided to make a move from Akron, OH to Cincinnati, OH and start a new job. I kept up the pace, while trying to also acclimate to a new city on my own, a city I knew nothing about and where the only person I knew I hadn’t seen since high school. As my responsibilities at the new job grew I began traveling, a lot. There were months where I wasn’t ever home a full week. I was pretty burnt out and my progress on schoolwork waned.
anything worth having is going to take some work
Finishing the journey
But here I sit, remembering why I started this journey and feeling a bit more invigorated. I gave up a lot of free time, definitely lost a lot of sleep, spent a lot of money on texts and software, not to mention that I ate way to much fast food. It’s was just plain hard to keep it all together. However, during this experience I learned that I’m much stronger than I thought and there’s no challenge I can’t take on if I really want it.
When I’m done I’ll have a much more diverse knowledge of my field and a stronger commitment to the science. I believe now more than ever, that anything worth having is going to take some work. And for me, the knowledge I gained about myself during the journey might be just as valuable as the information I learned in class.