Balancing My MS in Communication Coursework With My Day to Day

Allicia Washington-White headshot

Allicia Washington-White, Student & Alumni

Why would anyone pursue a master’s degree? Why would someone put in the countless hours of studying on top of an already hectic schedule? On more than one occasion, I have heard these questions followed by an overabundance of excuses explaining why someone does not have the time or thinks that a master’s education is not for them. I work full time, and am a parent, how can I balance one MORE thing?

A typical week for me consists of meetings, doctor appointments, play dates, commuting, cleaning, cooking, and kissing boo boos. If you are anything like me, you are likely a bit nervous about fitting school into your schedule. It is perfectly okay to be a little nervous about returning to school though. Everyone’s situation is different as to why they’re nervous. It’s been x amount of years, will I get the hang of it? I’m too old—I’m not very tech savvy. All of these reservations are common and you are among others who feel the same way you do and are willing to help you get through the online program.

Let’s look on the brighter side, taking courses online gives you the opportunity to work at a structured pace without worrying about racking miles on the car every week! Though many of us like the camaraderie of the classroom, some of you may learn that you work equally as well in an online classroom, just be sure to set up a place where you will study and be most productive.

Online learning has everything a traditional classroom has except the chairs and desks. You can still engage in discussions, receive helpful feedback on assignments, and access your professor when needed.    You will be able to appreciate that the university has created a user friendly online program for distance learners who still have a commitment and passion for education.

So what’s holding you back? Being nervous means that you care about your education and there is nothing wrong with that!

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Allicia Washington is a student in Purdue’s online Master of Science in Communication degree program. The program can be completed in just 20 months and covers numerous topics critical for advancement in the communication industry, including crisis communication, social media engagement, focus group planning and implementation, survey design and survey analysis, public relations theory, professional writing, and communication ethics.

*The views and opinions expressed are of the author and do not represent the Brian Lamb School of Communication.