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Isn't it pretty?

Friday, January 23, 2004

St. John's College

I had my visit to St. John's College in Annapolis yesterday. I spoke with the Admissions Director, had a campus visit, sat in on some classes and met my professor's girlfriend, who is in her last semester there. I really enjoyed the classes and felt like I would learn a lot from them as well as contribute a lot to them. I was not allowed to contribute to the class discussion, but in both classes, students brought up questions that I had wondered about myself. The students in the classes were serious about learning, had done the readings and were honestly endeavoring to find answers to questions about the texts. I was impressed by the students and teachers, and I felt like I could definitely fit in there. I had been concerned about being intimidated or put off by the intellectualness of the people there, and it was not the case. My concerns revolve around three main issues. The first is money. All financial aid at St. John's is awarded on a need-based, not merit-based, system. So it is going to be plenty expensive for me to go there. The second issue is what to do after getting my graduate degree there. A Masters in Liberal Arts basically qualifies a person to either go on for further education, teach at a private school, or do something completely away from the liberal arts arena all together. I am still not sure what I want to do professionally, and I am getting to the point where it is harder and harder for me to envision my future. I wouldn't mind going on to get my PhD, I think I could do it if I put my mind to it, but the academic job market stinks and pays extremely poorly, and it is a lot of work and debt to get there. I better make sure it is what I really want to do before I shoot for it. I have one other concern about attending St. John's. I know it sounds a bit silly, but I am almost afraid to surround myself with people who are into this kind of reading and discussing. I don't want to limit myself in the people who I associate with. I will have to work on making sure that my interests and friendships remain broad. Hopefully this task will not be too terribly difficult.

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