M A D – M A T H: educational system and how it f*cks some people`s lives

Remember when you were forced to study things that you didn’t really want to study and you have to excel on general things to be considered “knowledgeable” and smart. You were asked to memorize all the characters on a play and forms of theater etc. and yet all you want to do is solve linear and trigonometric equations. Remember when you were 15 and society asked you to decide what you want to be in your life? You didn’t even know how the world works, you haven’t seen it fully and yet there you are filling out university entrance application forms. It was the decision point and it sucks because not everyone knows what they want yet. People feel the other way but the point is, educational system is outdated and it’s been messing the life of some people.  They are wasting people’s time. Soon, some will realize how we were crafted like a mass merchandise, they will realize that it’s better to focus more on your own craft.

I’ve been waiting for this second chance for so long and now that it’s right in front of me, I’m having a cold feet. I was striving so hard to finally find my passion and leverage my time and skills but now that I was given choices, I couldn’t pick what my gut tells me to do. I am stuck in a bubble and it’s slowly evaporating. What would you do if you have your passion on your left hand and your responsibilities on the other? I’m being tested once again with this life decision making and I know for a fact that I suck on it.  But right now, I am able to make intelligent decision based on how I see the world around me.  Now, I know how hard it is to play a role in the society.

A year ago, I remember mapping out different path towards my ultimate goal of working for research, university, and/or federal government facility. I want to work in the field while doing hard science or computing. I did my best: put all my effort in researching University programs within a certain radius in my city.  I got my long and short path mapped out like it’s made by google with details on how much –time and financial wise– it would cost me to be where I want to be. I applied in every possible program and few months down, my world changed, from sleeping for 8 hrs everyday it went down to 3-4 hrs. I got accepted in different programs and I have a bigger and better problem: I’ve been thinking a lot about how can I choose between programs. What’s the best way to handle this?

I already started the program in the “short path” since they were the first institution to give me some feedback, I grabbed the opportunity last November 2017. I am in the “not so hard science but could be related to” program- Data Science. Though this is distance education for some part, I will be joining campus soon. I took the Harvard Division of Continuing Education Extension school program and paving my way to the Master of Liberal Arts. I was happy with my first course in STAT 104 -E. It’s somehow helping me to make better decision in my current job as a Data Steward. So when when I got different offer letters last week of January,  I realized how I didn’t prepare much on the what ifs of life (gosh I should’ve accounted for Standard Errors – Stats fail right there). I got into programs that I applied awhile back and I didn’t expect that it will alter my sleeping patterns- literally bugs me every night.

I was given a SECOND chance, multiple second chances and I should be happy about this. I do feel lucky about it but I just don’t have the courage to take the leap. Should I take the leap? I’m earning a decent amount of money that could support me in my “short path” program and I’m working at a really great company handling really great things but if I’m going to choose the “long path”, I need to be free of responsibilities and be totally invested on it. I have a choice to make, the longer path, is what my gut tells me to do but my brain is fighting it with the promising “short path”.  There’s no crying over spilled milk but for the future generation out there, I wish the society will accept that it’s okay not to decide what you want to be right away and/or at the age of 15. People need to see the world first… Do not get tunneled vision that getting a bachelor’s degree or Honours Bachelor degree right away is the key to success in life. Do not let an outdated system tells you that you what you want to do in this world. Take it when you’re ready, take it when you know what you want to do.

 

My problem still exist, I hope I can decide before it’s due. But if you were in my position, what will you take:

Data Science vs. Applied Mathematics & Earth and Atmospheric Science?

your goal is to work in Canadian Space Agency

 

**This only applies to people who had/have the luxury of time and choice to decide but were forced right away to figure things out. This do not apply to grave circumstances where there’s a need to support a family. 

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