Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Just call me Master Dara

"Congratulations, you have new letters behind your name." This was how my committee told me they passed my thesis, which means I'm graduating. The letters they were talking about were MA or Master's of Arts. What a relief! I knew that it wouldn't be bad, but it actually went easier than I expected. Either that, or I felt comfortable enough with my research that there were not any problems with what I was asked. The toughest question wasn't about my thesis, but was what book was most useful to me in grad school. This is from the teacher who assigned 4 or 5 books. Thing was, many of my classes in the department were seminars, which used assigned articles to read and not text books.

I still have some revisions to make on my thesis. This isn't that unusual, especially as there wasn't a lot of time for other committee members to review earlier drafts of the thesis. So I will need to make those in the next week. Once those are approved, I already have the signatures to take the thesis to the Dean.

For the first time I am getting excited about graduation. Prior to this, I was blase. It almost felt that it was no big deal getting a MA. It just didn't quite feel the same as getting a BA. Maybe it was because a BA really is a changing point in one's life -- the end of school and the start of the career. I would think a PhD would feel like quite an accomplishment, simply because the hard work for a dissertation and the fact so few people have one. But there was something about getting a Master's didn't make it seem like a big deal.

But now that my thesis is done, it does feel like a big deal. Of course, being selected as a commencement speaker helps. I found out that my speech is 2-4 minutes -- not a lot of time to depart words of wisdom. Today I bought my cap and gown, so that's done. Really, the big thing now is to get the thesis revisions done, get the sign-off from the Dean, and get my thesis bound.

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