Graduate degree…accomplished!

As I get older and go through fairly common or average life experiences (e.g. marriage, graduating, watching TV shows, etc.), I find it is harder and harder not to write in outright clichés. Yet here I am, saying goodnight to the weekend of my graduation from the University of Iowa with a Master of Arts degree in Library and Information Science, and I am dumbfounded by how fast the last two years of my life flew.

This weekend has brought some noteworthy realizations to the surface for me. While I have enjoyed the chance to be in school again and learn new skills and new ways to think about information in a society that is unwittingly ruled by information, I’m more vividly aware of the support system I have in my life. There is a network of humans that care for me very strongly, are proud of me and love me, and true awareness of this is tremendously overwhelming. If I had the inclination, I could expound on the grand theories of the field of librarianship, but I think as I put the final touches on my institutional education, I want to use this space to say thank you to some of the heavy hitters. This is by no means a comprehensive list, so if you’ve contributed even the slightest bit to my education and even more so to my life in the last two years, know that I am grateful.

I want to start by thanking my parents and my grandparents. You have been mentally and financially supportive during my time in school, and without your support, I would be in a far worse position than I currently find myself. But even more so, your care and admiration towards me is enormous. It means a lot to make you four proud, and I was overjoyed to share in this celebration with you. Thank you.

I’d like to thank my in-laws. You both have been an emotional support system to both Colleen and me for a long time now, and it’s been a pleasure and a comfort to be able to get to know you both better and hang out with you. Living this close has been a blessing for Colleen and me, and it will be a tough adjustment to be farther away. A patio date at Red’s is on us before we go. Thank you.

To a few specific classmates who most likely won’t stumble upon this post, you helped me through some fairly harrowing class assignments and experiences. I appreciated your help then and I certainly appreciate it now that I’m done. This degree was not all fun and games and your input and advise on homework and projects helped a great deal. Thank you.

To those not mentioned, I apologize for not mentioning you by name, but I garnered so much emotional and mental support from many people I wasn’t expecting these last two years. Thank you.

Finally, to my beautiful, caring, and eternally-understanding wife Colleen. There is no way I could have accomplished this without you. You have this uncanny ability to be exactly what I need, exactly when I need it. Whether it’s a chance to vent about a frustrating assignment or day at work, or a drive out to Kent or a walk to Red’s, or simply a night in watching Conan, you constantly know what I need and how to provide it. It has been, and continues to be, my goal to do the same for you. You’ve also kept a wonderfully clean and comforting home for us these last two years and it has been an immense blessing to me. I’m excited to be more available to help with the general upkeep of our life together, aside from just balancing the checkbook. Dibs on cleaning the fishbowl from here on out. I love you so much. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. The minute you decide school is your next step is when I get the cookbook out and start learnin’. You won’t cook another meal until you graduate…probably.

I am very happy and very proud to be finished with this phase of my life. On to the next, and thank you again to all who supported me in one way or another. You have blessed me beyond what you know, and I am forever appreciative of it. Now go and support your local library.

-Jon

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Filed under Librarianship, Life, Random

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