MatildaWormwood Posted December 9, 2017 Share Posted December 9, 2017 (edited) I am in a bit of a pickle and would like your advice. I feel like a horrible human, and need to find clarity. Hence, I am turning to strangers on the internet. I have an MS in Crop Science. I took a time off from academia to work in the industry for financial reasons. I wanted to save some money and see life outside the lab. I'd done a accelerated UG program and accelerated my masters. I don't know why I was in such a hurry. Perhaps if I had waited, and reflected, I would have developed some clarity. During my time in a non-academic setting, I determined that I wanted to do another masters. I literally said to someone, "It will be nice to talk about crop science again." when referencing my present program. Why that didn't set off alarm bells, I don't know. However, now that I'm here and have a semester under my belt in community health, I realize now that community health has less to do with my long-term than I'd been advised and had sussed out based on talking and doing research. I made connections to CH based on CS, and now that I'm in it, I see that they are chalk and cheese, at least in the classroom. It is possible that this is simply the orientation of the program I chose. I made the decision with the best of intentions thinking it would make me a better crop scientist to be able to communicate about issues within crop science more broadly and better understand how they impact human health. While in a sense it has, I own that I made an error in judgement that belongs to no one but myself. It has always been my intention to return to my field (literally!) for PhD studies. I feel as though I am off on a tangent and that what I am doing now is not for me. I don't want to just leave. I'm committed to doing the responsible thing, whatever I can figure that out to comprise. I have a future in academia, not the health professions. I don't want to be here, doing this work. I suppose I thought I could develop competencies, explore other areas, and trot back home to crop science, which I see now was not the best way to undertake what is a professional degree. It isn't an emotional/burn out issue. I've talked to a therapist and really thought about the root of my perspective. I just want to go back to my field, because I feel that's where I belong as a professional, and as an academic. I value the work I have done here, but I don't see a future for myself in the area of community health, though the skill sets I have developed are of value. I miss, however, my research, and so much about what I did then that I think now the better choice would have been to keep going, rather than undertake another program. Am I wrong to consider the certificate program my department offers? If I did, I would be done at the end of this Spring semester. I don't want to 'use' the department. I am not on stipend, and have student loans for this program. I need to figure out how to move forward ethically, reasonably, and sensibly. While my current programs knows of my intentions to try to go towards CS for my PhD, they do not know of my doubts and concerns at the present moment. I don't know how to have that kind of a conversation. I keep thinking about both my goals for my future and my present guilt of taking up a seat in a good program that could be used by a student who has every intention of working in community health. Do I stick it out, and work for another year and a half on this degree, knowing that my heart and mind are not here? Do I look into the certificate program, having entered with the intention of completing the CH program? Thank you for taking the time to read, and offering your opinions. I know I have the potential to really mess things up here, to trample on the goodwill of the department in which I find myself, and to shoot myself in the foot. It's not an easy place to find oneself. I appreciate any insights you may offer. Thank you for letting me post. I apologize if I've violated any of the rules in doing so, and will move or delete this post without complaint if required. Edited December 9, 2017 by MatildaWormwood Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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