Transitions

I got my graduate assistant paperwork in the mail yesterday, and filled out my first 1-9 and W-4 in almost 3 years–since I filled out my last Kimball forms. I’m official, bitch!

It finally started to hit me that I’ll be leaving NHEAVP soon.  This year has really flown by, and I’ve grown so much both professionally and personally. Part of me wants to stay on for another year to see the great plans we developed this year come to fruition. The other part of me knows that I need to move on to this next adventure.  I finally got used to waking up early and spending 8 hours in an office, and I have to prepare myself for schoolwork.

It helps that I have plans moving forward, and that I don’t have too much to worry about financially because my graduate assistantship gives me a stipend and tuition waiver (plus, 2 ed awards). I also just used a chunk of ed award to pay my fee bill and dropped $400 on textbook purchases and rentals. That’s basically all I have to spend this semester for school.

Things are definitely changing for the better, and i’m so excited to start school!

UNRELATED: Check the new layout!

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Miss me?

Yes, I went off the grid there for awhile. Between recruiting at work, suffering some serious anxiety, and attempting to amp up my fitness routine, my blog fell by the wayside.  Here’s some quick updates as to what’s been going on with me:

  • Interviewed over 50 candidates and selected 15 VISTAs for our 7 host sites!
  • Selected my two successors as VISTA Leader! 
  • Watched way too many episodes of the Real Housewives (New Jersey and OC)
  • Got way too in to Instagram
  • Became addicted to Candy Crush Saga (I’m stuck on level 201)
  • Facilitated an orientation
  • Made a sweet tie dye t shirt at our end of service event
  • Celebrated a 100th birthday!
  • Registered for grad school classes (best registration ever–did it during the middle of the day and got all my classes with no freezing or cursing)
  • Cried about how awful the Mets are 
  • VISTA missed my pay day
  • VISTA finally paid me 
  • Overheard a hostage situation in my neighborhood (Well, from far away)
  • Watched my sister graduate college and my brother graduate high school
  • Got a flat tire and purchased a whole new set of tires!
  • Went to a German dancing festival 
  • Marathoned the Office on Netflix.

Now you’re caught up.  Feel better?

Grad school updates!

Now that my office has a 2 hour delay…here’s some updates about my grad apps!

I got into Brandeis two weeks ago for the Master of Public Policy Program! Because of my AmeriCorps affiliation, they offered me a $20k merit scholarship…which covered only about half of tuition. I was super pumped to get in, but I knew I couldn’t afford to move to Boston and take out any more student loans. Sadface.

THEN…the UConn MPA saga. At open house, grad students told me that the admissions committee was meeting on March 4th and notifying applicants that day. March 4th and 5th passed, no answer. I went to a class on March 5th, and the program director told me they were meeting March 6th and notifying applicants THAT day.

So when March 6th passed with no word, I immediately assumed I didn’t get in and had a major meltdown at home.  I basically didn’t sleep and woke up at 5:30 in the morning. For those of you that know me, you know that I NEVER EVER WAKE UP THAT EARLY .

I called UConn in the morning yesterday and got no answer, and I assumed that they were giving me the dip.  I called again like a crazy person in the afternoon and finally got answers!

I was accepted into the MPA program with a graduate assistantship! I get a full tuition waiver + stipend, meaning I can save my 2 Segal ed awards for another day.

Also, the Department of Public Policy campus is RIGHT NEAR A NOODLES AND COMPANY. I’m in heaven.

ETA: My sister got into the MSW Program at UConn and my brother passed his Eagle Scout Board of Review! This has been a really good week.

Waiting game

Submitted my second and final graduate application to UConn last night!

I went to the MPA Open House a couple weeks ago and that gave me the final push to submit the application.  I love the program–it’s heavy on quant courses (read: math, finance, etc) in the first semester, but the courses are geared more at bringing everyone up to speed on quant, which is perfect for me (as a former history major who hasn’t taken math since high school calculus).  And if I get in I can take courses at the law school.  JUST LET ME KNOW ALREADY, OK?

Now it’s just time for me to wait…which is probably the worst part of the whole process. If the price is right and I get in to both schools, the decision will be tough.  

new year!

  • Spent New Year in New Haven with some of my favorites. 
  • Finished February recruiting unscathed at work, and currently counting down the minutes until summer recruitment begins in a few weeks
  • Got the flu even though I actually got the flu shot this year
  • Wrote a guide to filling out the AmeriCorps online application that our State Program Director liked!
  • Found the speaker for our Public Speaking statewide training next month!
  • May have also gotten reduced priced lunches for that event!
  • Filling out grad apps. One down (Brandeis), one to go (UConn)
  • RA Dickey traded to the Blue Jays. At least he can wear his Jose Reyes shirt again without it being too weird (this also means I’m rooting for the Jays to win the AL East this year)

Catching up…again

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So my past couple weeks have been super crazy. I took the GREs right after Thanksgiving,dealt with a minor family crisis (everything is ok, by the way),  and have been working on graduate school apps. Basically, I haven’t had too much time to relax even when I’m not at work.

Speaking of work…things have been CRAZY. Every other month I make site visits to each of my VISTA’s host sites to check in with them and see how they’re doing on their projects. Each site visit lasts about an hour, and I have to make about 10 of them this month (starting in February I’ll have to do 12!).  I love doing site visits–they help me get out of the office and get to know the VISTAs on a more one-on-one basis. It’s easier to hear how people are actually doing on site visits than in the bigger group meetings.

We have also been recruiting for 2 new VISTAs to start in February. Our state office wanted us to add in a screening interview process before we start forwarding applications on to the sites, so we have been developing and piloting that process. I actually enjoy conducting screening interviews–I’ve gotten to talk to some pretty cool people in the process! However, it has taken up a lot of my time lately so I haven’t had much down time in the office.

Not to mention MLK Day. But that’s a whole different beast. Separately, all these things are manageable, but all together it’s been a little stressful.  But I’m doin’ it, and enjoyin’ it. I’d rather be busy than have nothing to do.

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This cat exemplifies how I feel about all the stuff I have to do at work right now. I also just love this gif

And of course, on Friday the shooting in Newtown is something else that’s been going on. I live about an hour away from there, and I don’t really know anyone who lives there, but my heart goes out to those poor children, teachers, friends, and family members who were affected by the shooting that day. I can’t even begin to fathom how they feel. To have something so terrible happen in my home state has really weighed heavily on my heart.

Wake me up when November ends

  • Sandy destroyed my monthly VISTA meeting plan, but also gave me 4.5 days off work.
  • Studying for the GREs is, strangely enough, giving me some purpose. I forgot how much I liked school-type things.
  • I’m trying to balance my work life with my Alyssa-time  with my social life. I’ve been focusing far too much on the first two.
  • My little brother is interviewing at Holy Cross tomorrow. I feel super old now!
  • RJ Evans is playing for UConn and holding his own! Can’t wait to watch a little bit of HC play with my second favorite college basketball team this year!
  • Three day weekend this week, and three days off work coming soon for Thanksgiving. I guess November isn’t that bad.
  • I got to see my favorite stranger (Sarah) and favorite New Haven resident (Carrie) last week and it was fabulous! I love my HC friends! And also New Haven. Seeing them totally made my week.  And life.
  • Is it weird that I think the skeletons found under the tree on the New Haven green during Sandy are super cool?
  • I got two more Sailor Moon manga in the mail on Saturday.
  • I really like using the food processor.
  • I still hate Thanksgiving.