Irving Update: Spring 2017

Apologies to all my local friends who have probably heard me talk about this enough lately. You can all ignore this… my target audience here is all the friends and family in distant lands.

It’s time for another update from down in IrvingLand! I just finished my second year of graduate school; I got all my papers in (mostly) on time and managed to keep a fairly decent sleep schedule going in the midst of it. That in itself is a very good gift.

I’m in a PhD program, but they allow you to collect a Master’s degree along the way when you’ve met certain requirements. You have to pass X number of credits, demonstrate proficiency in one foreign language, and pass the “comprehensive exam” (a 4-hour essay, followed by a 1-hour defense). I’ve met all those requirements, so I’ll be receiving my MA in Politics at the commencement ceremony on Sunday. I get a hood! I get a diploma! I get to update my CV!

This is not the end of anything. It’s as if you’re running a marathon and they hand out medals at the halfway point: It’s a real medal, and you really did something, but you haven’t yet completed what you actually set out to accomplish. Or flying to Paris: you might have a layover in LaGuardia, which is cool, but that’s not the end point. The end point for me is still a PhD, and I realistically have two more years in Irving before I can torch this banana stand and go write my dissertation. So if you see pictures of me in a cap and gown, don’t get ahead of yourself: I’m sticking in the Dallas area for a while yet. I’m just picking up my half-marathon medal, or ducking out of the airport for a slice of pizza before continuing on across the Atlantic.

I am, actually, taking this a little time off from academics and not enrolling in any summer classes this year. I transferred (along with the whole leadership team from my old location) to a brand new Chick-fil-A which is opening next Thursday, so managing that restaurant will be plenty for me to occupy myself with this summer. A good friend and I coined the term #powerchilling to describe what we’ll be doing when we are not at work. Power Chilling is basically Resting Like You Mean It and Not Feeling Bad About It At All.

Classes I took this past semester:

-Civil Liberties (Constitutional law, focusing on Bill of Rights and 14th amendment issues)

-Graduate Seminar: Tocqueville

-History of Liberal Arts Education (One of the best classes I have ever taken anywhere).

-Hobbes and Rousseau

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