If at first you don’t succeed…

‘Tis a lesson you should heed,
If at first you don’t succeed,
Try, try again

Then your courage should appear,
For if you will persevere,
You will conquer, never fear
Try, try again

Christmas morning I awoke to find my husband in a rather poorly state indeed. He’s all too prone to winter bugs, quite unexpected for someone with his level of fitness. So Christmas day was a bit of a let down to be honest. I sat, watching rubbishy Christmas TV and trying not do slip into a boredom coma as the hours passed.

The dream of continuing/completing my education is never far from my thoughts. In fact, I probably think about it each and every day, and not a day goes by that I don’t wonder how differently things could have gone if I’d been more sensible and realistic about it. So it came of little surprise when, there I was on Christmas day, wasting time on the internet, and my thoughts turned to the possibilities I might have to pick back up on my dream.

A former colleague and friend had left the company in July to pursue a Master’s degree in Sweden. She chose Sweden because the government covers the full cost of both undergraduate and postgraduate education for all EU citizens. There are a few othercountries in the EU which also do this, but Sweden proved the best option for her specific interests. So on Christmas day, thinking of how impractical and impossible it would be for me to move to Sweden simply to continue my education, I couldn’t help but wonder if the tuition fees policy also extended to distance learning courses – they are, after all, still programmes run by a Swedish university, and I am, after all, still an EU citizen.

I came across a website during my search which provided the one answer that was capable of turning that rubbishy Christmas day on the sofa back into the greatest day of the year – yes it does. Hallelujah! Before the day was done, I had submitted an application.

I sat, waiting, with bated breath until the various deadlines passed. First it was the deadline for proving fee-exemption status. Then it was the deadline for proving previous education. Then, finally, on Thursday 26th March the day arrived that selection notifications were released.

Application status: Admitted.

I got in.

In September 2015 I become a Masters student once again, studying Decision Support and Risk Analysis at Stockholm University.

I’m under no illusions about a few things here. Firstly, the range of subjects available via distance learning is limited, so the subject I’ve been accepted for is by no means my first-choice if choice were unlimited. But to be honest, when postgraduate education is on offer at no cost, I’m happy to choose the most vaguely interesting subject from what’s available. Secondly, I’m crazy busy at work at present and adding a master’s degree to it will obliterate any and all free time I have for its 2 year duration. I consider it a small price to pay in the grand scheme of things, and I’m not exactly unfamiliar with the workload requirements of distance learning education.

What’s the most ridiculous part of this story though? That I’ve not even started yet, and won’t be working on my Masters thesis until 2017, but I’ve already had an idea for the topic. Now that’s enthusiasm.

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