Padawan No More, A Master I Am

Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, chances are you’re probably right.

I graduated in 2015 with my Bachelor’s degree in Public Relations while triple-minoring in sports business, advertising and nonprofit administration. Graduate school had crossed my mind many times as an undergraduate, but I thought I wouldn’t be able to do it and that it held no value for me – I was wrong.

As of July 27, 2015, “More than 16 million people in the US – about 8 percent of the population – now have a master’s, a 43 percent increase since 2002.” Earning a bachelor’s degree used to be a notable educational attainment. Now that bachelor’s degrees are so common, job seekers who want to stand out are turning to master’s degrees.”

Me thinking that a master’s degree held no value was silly. I went back to school, dreading the return of homework, overpriced textbooks, late night study sessions, carb and sugar overloads, and the general lack of social life that generally accompanies hard-working graduate students. To my surprise, flowing from bachelor’s to master’s was easy as can be. I found friends, traveled, explored, laughed, cried, sprouted more unnecessary gray hairs, and I’m sure developed more worry lines in my face – all to get that piece of paper declaring me a “master”.

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Me pictured with my twin brothers Nathan (left) and Kurtis (right) after receiving my degree.

The pinnacle of my successes was to speak to my fellow graduates, and family, at our hooding ceremony where I was able to address my reservations about graduate school and encourage others to overcome their own personal obstacles – and I was able to thank those who had led me to that moment in my life through telling my story. [See speech here]

My piece of advice to anyone who has reservations pertaining to continuing their education – do it, and do it your own way.

In the wise words of Master Yoda, “Always pass on what you have learned.”

Sincerely,

Mia N. Patterson, M.S.

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