An educational update

In a bid to secure my Bachelors degree before my ten year high school reunion, I’m back in school this semester with two classes. The plan is to graduate December 2011, but there are two variables upon which this depends:

  1. I need a course that satisfies the “History of Christianity and Judaism” requirement for my BA in Religious Studies. For some reason, these courses (there are only three that satisfy the requirement) are only offered every few years, and the next was to be in Fall 2011. Unfortunately, it will be a day class, and since my work really dislikes letting people take classes during the day, that might delay my graduation (potentially by a number of years).
  2. I need one 500-level English class to finish my Creative Writing minor, preferably the 500-level poetry workshop. Unfortunately, this is also during the day.

For number 2, I’d spoken to a few people and was reasonably confident I could get around this problem. Either I’d be able to take it during the day, I’d find a way to take it as an independent study (possibly by decree of the Dean or the Registrar if the department wouldn’t work with me), or I’d drop the minor and switch to a Bachelor of Science in Religious Studies. One way or another, this isn’t going to hold me back.

But I can’t switch majors, so number 1 was still a problem. While wandering through the Religious Studies department last night trying to find a couch to nap on before my night class, I ran into Dr. Moyer, who was head of the department when I started my college education.

He asked, as he always does, if I was graduating this semester, and I laughed uncomfortably as I always do. I told him that I’d hopefully graduate in December of 2011 after satisfying this requirement and his eyes lit up.

“Ah! I have something for you,” he said as he stood and picked his way around his desk, avoiding the piles of papers strewn across chairs and the floor.

He began digging through the papers on a table and told me that they had added a new course to next semester’s schedule. For the first time in four years or so there would be a night class with the subject of the Holocaust, and this class magically fulfills the History of Judaism and Christianity requirement (though its course number isn’t listed as one that works for this). Pulling a green sheet of paper from the mess of papers, he handed it to me and pointed at the course where, printed next to its title in parentheses, were the initials HJC.

A night class that finishes my major. I’ll enroll as soon as it’s available, and as of May 2011 I’ll have finished the requirements for my degree in Religious Studies.

Now, I still need to sort out the minor, and I need a few more upper-division course credit hours (above 300-level) to get the Bachelor of Arts degree, but I feel much closer now with this revelation. My current plan is to take the Holocaust course and one other 300+ level class next semester, and then I’ll take the 500-level seminar this summer as a six-week night class. In the fall, I will either take poetry workshop and a one credit hour reading course to finish my degree requirements or I will switch to a BS, take four hours somewhere, and be done with it.

And for the one credit hour course, I’m going to propose reading all the material for Julia’s class on the Midrash that I wasn’t able to take a few years ago, and then we’ll meet every week or so to talk about it. Maybe I’ll write some papers. It’ll be great.

And I’ll be done.

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