Day One | Post 3

By Elyse Muro
Updated June 2017

day one at graduate school

My Counseling Challenging Adolescents class began and so far so good! It looks like it’ll be a good summer course.  I talked before about my excitement for this class because I chose to take this course as an elective compared to having to take a course that is required.  The professor so far has met my expectations of being a great teacher.  His humor keeps me intrigued so I actually have a desire to listen to what he has to say; something that isn’t always the case in a required course with a not-so humorous professor.  As many first classes, we took time to get to know one another. This is actually a post-master’s course so many of the students are already in the field which will hopefully provide great insight regarding their experiences.  Although the first class went through regular routine of house keeping; bathrooms, vending machines, parking etc. and classroom expectations, one thing was very different: There is no syllabus.  

Since this is a newer course, the professor is looking for the students to construct what they want to learn and in what way.  There are some ideas already brewing that the professor threw out, but in regards to due dates for readings or papers; nothing.  The style is very laid back and in a sense it’s refreshing but this also makes me nervous and uneasy.  There are readings that are to be completed but it’s on my time.  I’ve never had a class laid out like this before and I really don’t know how to handle it.  At this particular time, I do know that we must read one book by our third class (e-mail was sent out about 3 weeks prior to class forewarning us to get a head start).  I have started and have gotten a good portion of it done, but I’m currently in the process of fitting six chapters into three days. With my awesome math skills, I’ve calculated that if I read two chapters a day I should be able to complete it. Sometimes that’s easier said than done. 
The first class overall was great and I’m looking forward to what’s in store for the next couple weeks. I am feeling some anxiety, though, with not having dates or a set reading agenda.  It was also mentioned that there will be a project at the very end of the class that ties the course together but no real details were disclosed regarding details so that’s nerve-racking too.  
Right now, I’m trying to keep a steady pace with my assigned readings while also keeping a balance with my work and personal life.  I’m hoping and assuming that in the next class, I will receive more details regarding the project as well as the professor’s expectations with future readings and due dates.  

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 Elyse has a B.S. in psychology from Penn State University. She is currently a second-year graduate student blogging about earning her master's in school counseling degree.
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