I’m thinking about coming back for another year (5th year) to upgrade my GPA primarily. I also want to earn more experience to increase my social skills and gain something more than academic.
I have a problem (many actually) and that is expectations. From my parents, according to graduate school and of myself.
I have failed one course in my first year and second year. This was major downfall for me, and I’ve never truly recovered from that despite doing very well in other courses.
I’ve also never fully taken a full course load. Which is a minimal expectation for graduate school. I have taken opportunities outside academia to mentor, volunteer and this year I plan to get in contact with professors that are researching in something I’m interested in. I also plan to be an ambassador and work at the library.
But I know what is done, is done. I’ve browsed many forums and talked to people that have said that Graduate school is not for me.
That may be, but my parents, my upbringing culture , the cousins and people around me that have snagged the best schools and gone on to become doctors really make me ashamed of what I am.
As a student in undergraduate life science, I feel there’s nothing out there for me. Beyond the completion of this degree…there’s nothing. I don’t know how to move past certain piles of failures in my life. I did have emotional burdens and had experienced relocation from one city to another that increased my commuting distance that did factor in impacting my GPA But every reason I come up with sounds pathetic and its really taking a toll on everything.
My heath, my confidence, my self-worth. I don’t know what to do.
People say College is better for these kind of people but can they really expect me to drop out and walk away from getting a degree when I’m almost at the finish line?
Please help, perhaps a reality check is in store for me.
there weren’t actually any questions in this e-mail (except from the rhetorical one right at the end there), so i’m not exactly sure what you want to know. but hey, sometimes you gotta just vent your problems to an anonymous person on the internet, and that’s totally cool.
not knowing your GPA, what you’re studying, or which graduate programs you’re interested in, it’s hard for me to judge the likelihood of your being accepted to graduate school – let alone the fact that there’s no way of knowing how well you’re going to do in your fifth year, if you decide to come back.
but i’m not in the business of making judgements. i’m more in the “barfing-out-thoughts-in-the-hopes-of-occasionally-striking-on-something-helpful” business…Ltd.
in regards to the failed courses: it happens. your past does not define your future. we all fall down. be the person who gets back up again, because that’s what makes people exceptional. trust aska – you can do it.
as for meeting your parents’ expectations: i understand that parental pressure can be enormously limiting and difficult to break from. it’s natural to want to make your parents proud. besides that, parents are often our financial lifelines, and for that reason, you don’t want to piss them off.
however, if you can’t go to grad school – either for personal or academic reasons – you may as well come up with an alternative plan that will make you happy.
if you have a college program in mind that makes you feel more alive and excited than any graduate program, then that is what you should pursue. and NO, it does not make you a less successful, less special, or less valuable person.
also: your reasons for having a low GPA are not pathetic. they are circumstances which will affect any person who experiences the external world, and may affect you more or less based on who you are and your experiences.
coming back to school for a fifth year to upgrade your GPA for grad school is something a lot of students do, and may be a great idea for you. however, before/if you decide to come back to school, i would recommend talking it over with a few people who can help to make sure you’re ready.
Good2Talk is a helpline geared specifically towards college and university students. they can help you talk about what you’re feeling in a productive way, so you’re ready to face school, or whatever may come next in your life.
Counseline is even more specific – they provide phone and face-to-face counselling for Faculty of Arts & Science students (just keep in mind that you could only use this service once you were officially registered). CAPS is another uoft-specific alternative.
if you’re saying you feel like there’s nothing for you after this degree, that’s something you should talk about with someone. i’ve given three recommendations that i personally really like, but you should reach out to anyone you’re comfortable with.
before coming back for a fifth year and shelling out half your savings for tuition, it’s also a good idea to talk to your registrar’s office about coming back. they can talk with you in more detail about grad school, or any other plans you may have.
and if there’s anything else you want to talk to me about, i’m always here to help.