Minor set back… or not?

If I had back 2 school blues earlier now I have them even more. Today was just one of those days… Long story short, I woke up late for my first class (Economics) in which I had a test in. Then in my weight training class after getting ready in the locker room locked the keys to my lock inside the locker. Then in Biology class my friend Jorge text me that he just applied for graduation and is set to graduate in December.  I got out of Biology class early and thought why not go ahead and apply. I met up with Jorge and he helped me get everything in order and then that’s when the nightmare really started. Okay so it’s not really a nightmare. I know I’m making this a bigger issue than it really is. I’m just very upset.

My poor lil lock 🙁

So I go up to the lady who gives out a sheet of paper saying, “CONGRATS after successful completion of this semester you can graduate”. We reviewed my degree evaluation and at 1st nothing was matching she tells me “you’re missing 3 business classes” and I tell her, “no I’ve been following what the counselor gave me and have taken all the classes”. She looked at it and said, “oh they have you in the wrong program let me change it, you should be fine”. She then tells me, “no even after correcting it you are short 6 hours”, I of course try showing her I am not, I’ve been following this hand out my counselor gave me a year ago to the dot. Well after reviewing the information my counselor apparently forgot to mention that aside from all these classes I still needed to take 2 electives. She informs me to visit a counselor and apologizes to me. Along the way I am freaking out and am pissed because if this is in fact true it’s going to ruin all my plans.

See I have been following it 🙁

I visit a counselor, I tell him my situation and he tells me “sorry I’m not sure why the previous counselor didn’t tell you about the 2 elective classes you have to take but you will have to take 2 more classes to graduate”. I of course am cursing up a storm in my head and this is where it gets funny. He then asks if I’m going to be transferring to a university to get my Bachelors degree because I can take courses that will transfer. I tell him no, he looks at me like why not, you are supposed to. He asks again, I say “no” he then said “so you are not going at all”. I said “that’s not part of my plan, I really don’t even want to get my associates but thought I was so close to graduate I shouldn’t give up and at least get this”. He then says so what are you going to do; I tell him I am going to get my associates and then go backpack around the world for a year or two. He looks at me like I am nuts and starts asking me the same questions everyone asks when I tell them. We ended up talking for about 30mins and 25 were about my backpacking trip. He apologized again and I of course left pissed as hell because this is going to throw my plans for a loop.

These are the different thoughts crossing my mind:

Thought #1: Part of me just wants to say fuck it drop my Biology class (it’s the only class I truly hate) and finish these other three classes (even I know it would be stupid to drop them all). I can then get a part time job now start saving more and go on about my plans. Then when I come back from my year or two backpacking trip decide what the hell I wanna do with my life. Hell I may never even come back.

Thought #2: The other part of me is thinking, okay Jaime calm down its just 2 more classes that you have to take in the spring and they are electives. I can take Music 101 for all it matters or some stupid easy classes online and still get 1 part time job. Just get 6 more hours and graduate.

Thought #3: I keep thinking maybe this is a sign. Since I need 2 electives I can take two classes in the spring that can help me with web design and get a better understanding of how to make a website. If I did this it could give me an advantage down the road with my blog/website to make it more unique.

Thought #4: I really wanna go with thought #1. I know it would make me 100% happy but I HATE this stigma that exist in our world that you are not going to do anything in your life without finishing school and getting some type of degree. I already mentioned this to some of my friends and family and they have all insinuated the same thing “um you better finish”.

These are just a few of the thoughts running through my head. Trust me I can go on and on but I am just so confused and not sure what to do. I know regardless of what I decide to do with this I am still leaving in 10 months!

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  1. QueenBrain12 says:

    I’m sorry you had such a bad day. I love you and I hope you are feeling better now.

    This is just a small bump while on your journey to take off. Jaime you are not the same guy that becomes dramatic at the sight of change. I know mature Jaime knows what the right decision is and the one you will make.

    Finish what you started. The way I see it it comes down to “final destination”. What I mean is, this set back happened for a reason. What if you did decide to say fuck it and not finish school and take off and you are at the wrong place at the wrong time….? Maybe that’s me being selfish because I’m not ready to lose my Pinky, but still makes you think. lol

    Don’t stress this new information. It’s still too new for you to make a wise decision, but do make the decision you will be happy with. Whether, your decision makes you happy now or later.


    • Your right its a small bump along my journey. Im gonna rest on it and then decide what to do. Oh & trust me no matter where I am on this planet you will never loose your Pinky 😉

  2. I LOVE option number 3. Take everything that comes to you from here on out as a positive experience. You will look for some EASY courses that will help you with your web design. Worse comes to worse you will laugh it off when you are on the airplane ride to Europe. Chuito is throwing things at you to test you. You will prevail and be able to accomplish your goal! I’M ROOTING FOR YOU FRIEND!!!

    • I know you and I know the rest of the INCREDIBLES are going to tell me to go with option #3…LMAO, I know y’all to well!!! Im going to think it all over, thanks for rooting for me. Oh & who is Chuito???

  3. Oh man, you should like you’re having my type of week.

    I don’t know what is the right thing to do but I do have two pieces of advice that may get you there

    1) Do what YOU want to do vs. what OTHERS think you should do. I hear ya on the societal pressures and believe me they get you no farther ahead in life.
    2) Don’t make a decision while you’re emotional.

    You likely know the right thing for you deep down. And remember that whatever decision you make, it won’t make or break your life. As you said, you have no idea if/when you will come back.

    Good luck!
    ayngelina recently posted..12 things I hate about traveling

    • Okay we kinda are except yours is like way worse. I am at least in the comfort of my own home and city…lol!!! I seriously hope you went shopping and moved on from wherever you were to like a beautiful beach resort or something!

      Thanks for the comment. I’m going to take both of your pieces of advice and I know I’ll do what right for me.

  4. Ok, this does really suck, but like you told me the other day, keep on going and it’ll all work out. I agree with Ayngelina that you should do what is best/right for you, not what other people think you should do. Also, my opinion is that you’ve come this far with your degree and you’re so close! And I love #3 about taking classes that will help you with web design. Maybe look through the course catalog and mark down any classes that sound like they would be helpful to you if you decide to really pursue blogging and other traveling, location independent, money-making stuff. Sit on it for a few days or a week or something and decide when your mind is more clear. I already have a better perspective on my problem and it’s only been 3 days since we chatted. Keep me posted, and let me know if you want to talk 🙂
    Ali recently posted..Otavalo- Chickens- and the Effects of High Altitude

    • Thanks I should take my own advice huh??? Ugh why is it so much easier than said??? Yes I am so close it’s like fuck why throw me a curve ball when everything is going so well. Maybe its a test that I’m gonna need to over come. I’m going to email the course catalog so I can through it at work and see what interest me and may help my blog or writing skills.

      I will sit on it and think about it over the weekend, time will help! I am also glad you have got a better perspective on your problem and that I was able to help!!! Hope it all works out well for ya too~

  5. It is nice to finish things up, but even if you don’t, couldn’t you transfer all (or most) of the credits you’ve been taking into a 4-year university later *if* that’s what you choose to do? I guess different schools have different rules for transfers, but something to think about.

    As you said, regardless of which option you choose, you’ll be on the road! Sounds like it’s a good test to affirm your commitment 🙂
    Heather recently posted..Discover Fraser Island in 2 Days

    • Hmm you have a good point! I could just finish this semester and then when I come back go straight to a 4 year University and finish up what I need there. If thats what I decide to do when I get back.

  6. Hey… Wow, this sucks. I know how you feel! When you plan something and suddenly you have to change your plans. But I can tell you that yes, everything happens for a reason… In my case I had to wait 4 extra months (!!!!) and I came up with my blog and other projects during these months… maybe they wouldn’t exist if I didn’t have the accident. So follow your own advice (Thought #3) and try to take it easy.
    Plus, you don’t want to start your trip with the feeling that you have still something to do back home… you don’t want to have a reason to come back! haha:)

    • Oh wow thankfully this will not postpone my trip for 4 months I would go BONKERS! I am glad you came up with your blog cus I love it and like I have told ya before you will most def be my EGYPT GURU!!!

  7. Ok Jaime. I know we have already discussed a little of this but I’ll just say it again and agree with some others here.

    I think you should drop Biology if you really feel it’s going to burden you that much. Take it in a Winter Mini, it will be MUCH faster! You should definitely finish the rest of your classes you are enrolled in right now so that you don’t have to worry about them later. In the Spring I think you should definitely take some intro classes to web design or something of the sort. You’re absolutely right about it being able to help you in the future with your blog and or website 😉

    Now aside from that. I also agree with you that it’s an absolutely ridiculous stigma that we have about education being “EVERYTHING”. Um HELLO, I have friends that have DOUBLE DEGREES and still have no fucking job. I know that’s entirely caused by our economic affairs at the moment, but regardless! Education is a great tool to help catapult, or merely get your foot into an industry that interests you. There are, and will continue to be TONS of very very successful people that did not go to college. My parents are examples. Granted my mother’s career is due to my father’s success, as it is now anyway, and my father never went to college.

    All it takes in this world (America) is hard work, dedication, and the FIRE in your heart to do something! That’s what the American dream is all about. I hate that people look down on someone as uneducated or even stupid just because they don’t have a fucking piece of paper that says, “YOU WERE ABLE TO FUCK AROUND IN COLLEGE, CRAM THE NIGHT BEFORE, AND PASS ENOUGH TESTS TO RECEIVE THIS AWARD”. Well congratulations, but I don’t seem to give a fuck.

    • I am glad we are on the same page about the stigma I know me and you relate a lot on that. I’m going to think about what I am going to end up doing and decide later. I’m still not sure what to do.

  8. Follow your heart, not your head, it will never lead you astray!
    Andi recently posted..Planning Netherlands &amp Spain

  9. Jaime,
    Do you really care what people on the conventional path do? I have an associates degree, but it doesn’t even really matter… I never worked for anyone in my adult life! I could have gotten the same education elsewhere on my own without spending a dime. I think more and more employers are looking towards what you can do rather than a piece of paper!

    Listen to what your heart says… are you only getting this degree because your friends/family are all telling you to finish what you started or are you getting it because Jaime really wants a college degree? If you don’t even plan on using the degree, what is the point of even having it? Truth is, I don’t think you know what you want… I think this backpacking trip is going to change your life in ways you would have never guessed. Maybe you start teaching English in China or joining the Peace Corps… hell I don’t know.

    You could quit and leave tomorrow if you wanted. If you sell your car, you more than have enough money to leave. You’re in a really good situation right now. Remember you are making a choice… make the one Jaime wants, not the one everybody else wants you to do.
    Jenny recently posted..Rewrite Your Story

  10. At the risk of pissing off some of the people who commented above me….

    You can’t teach English in China, let alone join the Peace Corp w/out at least a BA (sorry Jenny).

    In that same vein, the point of ever getting that BA is opportunity. Some of the opportunities that having a college degree brings may not be relevant or even desirable to your now, but what about in 10, 20, or 30 years? I can think of one that is: studying abroad. Just keep in mind that some doors you shut now may not open so readily in the future.

    I had no clue you didn’t plan on moving on to get your bachelor’s at some point. Had I known that I would have told you not to bother finishing your associates..YOU HATE SCHOOL.

    BUT, since you’re already there: TAKE ADVANTAGE OF IT. Take a class on international affairs or web design. Take them pass/fail (if that’s an option at san jac) and enjoy the content without stressing about the grade.

    • Your not pissing me off, I just have an alternate opinion. I listed those two things as an example of what Jaime may end up doing to keep traveling. However, you can actually teach English without a BA. I’m not sure on China’s requirements specifically but what matters most is being a native English speaker and possibly a certification.

      For the Peace Corps you don’t need a BA either, but it could give you a wider range of placement opportunities. What is equivalent to a BA in the Peace Corps is relevant experience. Same as the workforce.

      So sorry I just don’t belong to the original school of thought that a college degree automatically means you get somewhere in life. I also don’t agree that just because your close to completing something you DON’T LIKE/WANT automatically means it’s the right path to take. Some of the most successful people on the planet didn’t even graduate high school.

      It’s up to Jaime what he feels is best for his life. I’m just trying to offer my thoughts without persuading him one way or the other. It doesn’t matter what I think he should do or you for that matter. All that matters is what Jaime wants.

      If taking some classes in web design will help your goals beyond school (having a successful blog?) then utilize this set-back as an opportunity.
      Jenny recently posted..Rewrite Your Story

  11. Jaime…you’ve made it this far. Stick with it. You’ll be proud of yourself in the end. Take 6 hours of something you’ll enjoy or get through without stress. Dropping what you’re already pushing through just because of 2 electives is the weakest thing you can do. STICK WITH IT. PLEASE. Your backpacking trip will not be derailed. KEEP WITH IT!!

  12. I totally agree with what others have said, do what YOU WANT. On the other hand you might as well get it finished since you’ve already done most of the work, you’ll have more options. The web design classes is something that you can apply now and actually use.

    At the end of the day it’s your life to live. I’m sure that when you’re on your trip, you’ll discover what you really want to do with your life.
    Nick Laborde recently posted..Held Hostage By The American Dream

    • Even though I am still not sure what I am going to do. I am at least going to look through the course catalog and see what classes they offer and go from there.

  13. Well, at least electives can be fun man. I went to school in Michigan’s U.P and I actually took a backpacking class as a elective, haha. It was pretty cool. In your case though I really have to say I like option #3 for real. I’m older then you so just do what I say 🙂 Option 3 is smart and at the same time beneficial to the life you really want of being a travel blogger/writer.

    Also, Jenny is right. There are opportunities to teach English abroad if you are fluent in English. As for Peace Corps having a four-year college degree will help your chances of acceptance but it isn’t absolutely necessary. Work experience, relevant skills, and a community college degree can qualify you.
    Michael recently posted..Photo-Free Travel

    • Shut up they really have a BACKPACKING CLASS??? That is so crazy but so damn cool!!! I would take that class in a heart beat. So yeah I still don;t know what I am going to end up doing but I am going to go through the course catalog and see what they have. Thanks for the advice!

  14. Hey Jaime, I’ve been reading your blog and I thought we had a lot in common, but now that I’ve read this post too, I think we have crazy amounts in common. I’m leaving for a vagabonding RTW 1-2 year trip in February. I’m deciding to sell my “Tyler” who is also a Nissan and worth $15k. I also have $8k in debt..aaand I dealt with this same question in the 8th semester of getting my BSE in Electrical Engineering. Can we chat sometime?

  15. I dealt with this same question in the 8th semester of getting my BSE in Electrical Engineering and ended up going with option #1. Worked the part time job I have now, started saving $1k/month for my trip, and couldn’t be happier with my choice. In the end, you have to do whatever will make you happiest, because that’s all you have.

    • Thank you for the comment! It is good to know that I am not alone and that someone else has had to make similar decisions! I have been thinking about it and I think I know what I am going to do. In the end I know it will be the right thing for me!

  16. Hang in there! Look, things happen for a reason and you’re at the place and time that you’re supposed to be. Don’t get desperate and drop everything. Breath, count to three and think things out. In my humble opinion, go with thought 2 or 3. But just remember, you are exactly where you’re supposed to be at the time that you’re supposed to be. We’re with you, friend! 😀

  17. Follow your heart!
    Don’t ever study because someone else tells you that you should, that will only lead to a future you don’t really want.
    The only reason you should study is if you’re truly interested and passionate about it, if it’s something you really want to do. If not, then don’t do it 🙂

    • Thank you for posting this. I woke up this morning knowing what I was going to do and this just re-affirmed my decision! I will be writing about my decision soon~

  18. I totally understand what you are going through, and although I don’t have any scientific answers, I think you just have to do what feels right to you. It seems like there is no “right path” that means you will succeed or you won’t. But things to keep in mind: Some of the best classes I took for my undergrad were those elective classes. I kind of agree with Heather that you could just take the classes you do have and then transfer- you might get back from your trip and know the exact direction you want to go in and then finishing a BA/BS is in the cards. Having options is never a bad place to be! Good luck, which ever way you choose!
    Jade recently posted..10 things to do in LA when it’s over 100 degrees

  19. just do what feels right jaime. in a few months it’ll soon be over and you’ll be seeing the world…
    flip recently posted..The Rice Terraces of Banaue and Batad

  20. Jamie,

    Something else that may help (if it hasn’t already been mentioned). Take a look at CLEP or DSST exams. Most colleges allow you to take at least two or three of them and they’re great for electives. For $100, a bit of dedicated study and an hour or so of your time, you could pick up 3 credits for each exam.

    Hit me up via Email if you need some more information. I’ve taken over 40 of the things and this is exactly the kind of situation for which they kick ass.

    Good luck no matter what you decide to do!


  21. def finish mate, much better in the long run. Once u get that piece of paper, noone can ever take it from u and u can travel forever, knowing that IF u need to go back (unlikely) a job shouldnt be too hard to find
    johnny recently posted..The good- the bad and the ugly of Khao San road- Bangkok

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