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Old 08-10-2008, 02:28 PM   #1
Nicolas'mom
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I am a single mom to a 14 month old.
I am finishing up a master's degree (thesis only left!) and will be taking the comprehensive exams in November. My ex left me in the middle of the program. I am currently unemployed and he provides little help. I have been looking for a job w/o success, all the jobs are really low paying that I have found. I have been thinking about just getting certified to become a teacher (a second master's) it would go much faster, because I already have one. And then doing the PhD the slow way. However, I am not sure how to afford daycare, and RENT! Is this insanity? I want to do what's best for my child and I would be making upwards of 57,000/ yr w/ 2 master's degrees as a NYC teacher. Any New Yorkers or anyone period in a similar situation? I really want a PhD, but I feel I need to make a compromise and do what's in his best interest. TIA everyone for any help! Sorry this is so long.
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Old 08-10-2008, 04:38 PM   #2
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My humble opinion.... the PhD is more of a hobby/interest type of credential as oppose to a Master's degree.

If you need to take care of your child's needs first, then I would persue the PhD until you have gotten these needs satisfied. That way you can work on the PhD while working.

Another thought would be the length of time and resources you would need to get your PhD. If it means tightening your budget for a year or two.... then it would seem worth it if your income also increases more than 20%. (Otherwise, why limit your lifestyle just for a piece of paper saying you have a PhD if your income would not be significant enough to notice)
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Old 08-10-2008, 08:50 PM   #3
Nicolas'mom
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Thanks so much, that makes sense. I kind of was thinking along the same lines. My income would increase provided I find a tenured position. But, it's kinda hard to plan your life and your child's on that, because they are hard to land (I'm in liberal arts not science). I can still teach as an adjunct at a college with a Master's in the evenings or during summer to gain experience, and still publish and present at conferences to prepare (which I did all through my pregnancy). I'm only 28 so I know I have plenty of time in the future to get the PhD, it should only take me around 2-3 years, and I can save up for this. Thanks again, this parenting stuff is wild and sometimes you just need to vent/get feedback.
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Old 08-10-2008, 10:22 PM   #4
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Wow; I am reading you messeges and thinking what an amazingly ambitious person you are for completing a masters degree while pregnant and thinking of doing another and then your PhD. I agree with Tessmit to a degree. I think you need to ensure some stability and save a bit before you go back to school, however, do not put it off to long. Since I met my husband I had thought I should go back to school and become a Dr (and specialize in Crdiology). We struggled financially through our whole marriage so I never thought it would be possible so I gaveup on that dream and now I wish I had not. I know I could go back now but mu Bachlers degree is too old and would not be applicable so I would have to start from scratch and by the time I was done and practicing I would be old enough to retire (Ok I am not that old but still). I just don't see it as a viable option any more.

Are their any grants or scholorships that you can apply for to make it easier for you finacially?
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Old 08-11-2008, 06:36 PM   #5
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I finished my bachelors degree in education when I was pregnant for my son. I intended on going back and getting certified (did not complete due to illness in pregnancy) and then I went through the father coming and leaving numerous times...we moved several times and finally I had to take a job (not in education) just to support my son. Five years later I still have not got back and I regret it immensely! I was 30 and thought I had plenty of time..now at 35 I feel like I am getting to old! My take find a way to complete your education, there is more help for mother's who are not working or working part-time then there is when you start earning real money!

That is just my opinion based on my regrets, but you need to do what feels right for you! Good Luck!!!
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Old 08-11-2008, 10:42 PM   #6
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I have thought many times about going back and getting my masters degree in Recreation Managment. Seeing as that has been where my career has progressed, there is no denying that maybe this is where I was ment to be. On that note, however, I do not want to be a manager of aquatics facilities the rest of my life (otherwise known as a glorified lifeguard). I am hoping to work my way up to a facility manager of a muly recreation complex and maybe even the recreation director for a municipality. Most of these types of positions require a masters degree or equivalent work expereince so even if I do not go back to school I might still achive these goals but I would not want to lay all of my eggs in one basket.

We will see what the next year brings and I may start back to school part time working on a course based masters instead of a thesis based one.

Leanne
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Old 09-14-2008, 06:21 AM   #7
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Hi, Nicolas'mom! First, I want to commend you on your journey! It is a tough one that we all must take to ensure our children have the best life.

I am new to this web site as well, and I am basically in the same situation. However, I have 5 children.

I am currently in an ED. D. Program online. I have been teaching 10 years in Alaska. I know firsthand about financial struggles! But, I truly believe you teach your children to love learning by continuing your education!

Teaching has brought a stable income for me. However, if you are going into the field just to make money, it is not something I would recommend. The time spent outside the workday is much more than you are paid for. I do not regret my field of study, but there have been times when I wish I had chosen a different field because it has taken family time. Have you heard the saying: teaching is a calling? You don't do it for the money. This is very true!

I would recommend you take a bit more time in deciding what you really want to do. If you are happy in your work life, it will show in your family life as well.

I wish you well!

Monica Prince
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