Welcome to 2014. Welcome to grad school. Welcome to new discoveries as this year I end my 20s and step into my 30s.
This month I began my graduate studies at Florida State University as a candidate for Masters in Fine Arts of Dance. I’m well on my way to doing all those adult things that grown up people do with dance. Everyone keeps asking me if I feel any different going from undergraduate to graduate studies. Everyone asks if it’s much harder than it was just a month ago.
Honestly, it’s pretty easy. I hear from my peers about how difficult it is and how much they have to do on a daily basis. I’m not quite as stressed. This is not to say that school is easy by ANY means. But my workload is manageable. Some nights I lose sleep to complete things and other nights I don’t. The same could be said about my undergraduate studies though. I had other peers who stressed out themselves daily about all the things they had to do. I never did.
Maybe it’s me. I recognize that I am a relatively low stress individual in general. But I have another theory. I think there are plenty of people out there who are entirely too high stress. I think they put too much pressure on themselves to accomplish even the most medial tasks. I also think these are the same people who force themselves into graduate school. So when people talk about how hard graduate school is, they are usually the same people who lost hair in college and high school.
I’m making things happen to stay busy but so far its manageable. I’m choreographing a large group piece in Gainesville, I’m working with a student choreographed show at school for a piece that I created as well as performing a faculty piece. I’m also teaching class in town for a genre of dance I am the least familiar with (ballet) while creating another group number for a dance competition in Atlanta. All the while, I’m taking class and working grad hours at school. So I’m not without things to do.
I also recognize that graduate school for Dance has a different stress factor than, say, graduate medical school. All things being equal, I may be low stress but there are plenty of high stress people around who like to blow things out of proportion.