Wow! It seems like just yesterday I received my first set of study materials in the mail for my MSc program, and now it’s almost over. On the one hand, I wish the Leicester experience could continue. On the other hand, I recognize that the program was initially a means to an end.
As I reflect on the overall experience, I must say that despite the challenges of being a distance learning student, I have rather enjoyed my time in the program. I certainly wish that I could have had the experience on campus, but, as that wasn’t possible, just being a University of Leicester student has been extremely rewarding. I don’t mean in the obvious ways. I mean that I have encountered several people over the past 2-3 years who are either alumni or former tutors for various U of L programs, so feeling connected to a widening professional network confirms that the effort and the sacrifice were well worth the investment. And to think, I didn’t initially even want a masters degree. Honestly, I’m glad I opted to go this route, especially since there is no guarantee at all that one can pass all three CFA exams. Over the same 2-3 year time span, I’ve met a number of people who have struggled to pass the CFA level 2 and 3 exams, and spending 5-6 years to only have earned 1/3 of a qualification is not a good risk management move, in my opinion.
I’m trying to regain my focus on writing up my dissertation after having been hospitalized and still dealing with ongoing treatment for a serious illness, but the finish line is in sight. I have to keep reminding myself of that last bit because I nearly tapped out, feeling that I was too sick to focus on writing up the dissertation. However, I reviewed the university’s statement on why the dissertation is required, and I realized that unlike doctoral research, this piece only needs to fill a gap in the academic literature, not develop a new concept or model. Besides, the hard part – the research – is already done. All I need to do is actually write, and writing has always been something that I rather enjoy. I’m not sure if I’ll still have access to my supervisor, but I was just assigned a new tutor, so as long ass I have a way to get some feedback, I should be able to offer a passable dissertation.
I’m still toying with the idea of doing a PhD or DBA (mainly for an excuse to continue to study and actually experience the U of L campus), but I’m undecided at this point. The reality is that in business, a PhD is seldom a selling point on the job market outside of academia. I have considered perhaps doing it so that I could teach in a university and do some high-level niche consulting, but I’ll need to do a bit more research to figure out if the ROI is really worth it. I do have a couple of friends for whom the PhD has facilitated international consulting and speaking opportunities, but with such a small sample size, I can’t be sure if those results can be generalized to a wider population (notably, me).
OK, back to working on my dissertation. I’m hoping to finish writing up the literature review in the next 7-10 days, depending on how much energy I have. More importantly, I hope that I can reach my supervisor and get feedback on the chapter before moving forward. I’ll keep you updated.
Gee…..I love this place….and I haven’t even been there yet.