I don’t know if you’ve heard about Harvard Extension School. If you haven’t, it’s basically a place where anybody can start in on some college classes. (It’s perfect for someone in my situation.)
If you meet certain criteria, you can actually be accepted to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree from there. If you do graduate from Harvard Extension, you can attend the regular Harvard ceremony, and get your degree from Harvard University.
Also, as a student at Harvard, you can take advantage of many things normal students can – playing on Harvard sports teams, playing in the marching band, etc. I know it’s not exactly the same as being a student at Harvard College, but as far as the limited options people like myself have when it comes to going to college – this is a stellar one.
What I can tell you is that I signed up for Expo-25, the first of 3 classes one would need to take to eventually be accepted (which is what allows you many of the perks of being a Harvard student (and a student in general)).
To take that first expository writing class, you have to pass a placement exam. I signed onto my Harvard Extension School account, ’cause I remember having taken the placement exam when I first learned about Harvard Extension.
I saw that my passing score was from 2010. I had always planned to go back to Berklee after taking the summer (and possibly fall) to get away from the scene. But alas, in September 2010, I realized that was not going be possible (or it was going to be more prohibitive than I was wiling to sacrifice).
Back then, I was all about, “What are my options?”
That was when I took those community college classes online in the few subjects you couldn’t CLEP out of at Berklee. I wanted to at least feel like I was sort of moving forward in some way.
That year was also when I found out about Harvard Extension. (I took the placement exam in December 2010.) Other than passing one placement exam, I did nothing with Harvard Extension… until now.
I’m not necessarily saying I’m going to become a degree candidate, or that Harvard Extension is absolutely the right choice as the end game for me. But what I am saying is that from everything I’ve heard, it has wonderful and challenging classes.
While looking into any options I do have college-wise, the one thing that was true across the board was that they all wanted some sort of recent academic progress. It didn’t have to be full-time study somewhere, just a class here and there to show you’re willing to study and do well at this point in your life.
So, I’m going to take this class. If I continue wanting to actually go to a school somewhere, this might help me. Or, if I decide for whatever reason that I do want to graduate with a Bachelor’s, but I don’t want to go somewhere else (or if I didn’t get in anywhere else), I could continue class by class at Harvard Extension. The program is amazingly flexible. I sort of wonder why more schools don’t have something like this.
There you have it. 3 years later, I signed up for the first class. Before, I bemoaned about the money. And time. I didn’t want to commit to a 2-hour window every week when I had to sign on to class, ’cause (read over-dramatically) what if it conflicts with my next job?
Now that I work in post-production, it’s much simpler than working on set. My work environments are very lax. If I need to come in a little early and take a 2-hour lunch once a week, I’m lucky that I can.
Basically, there’s almost always a way to find the time and money if you prioritize something high enough. So, I found the time and money for one class, and we’ll take it from there.