It's funny - ever since I graduated, all I can think about is going back to school next fall. Even though I've still got a year before I plan on going, I still want to be as prepared as possible. Next week my mom and grandma and I are going to visit Oxford and tour Ole Miss (and Rowan Oak!!), and I am so freakin' excited. At first, I was really nervous about choosing the school as my grad school just because it's so far away from everything I know (6 hrs from the ATL); however, it is my only option if I want my MBA in Southern Studies, and I actually think Oxford would be a nice change of scenery. It only has a population of 20,000 (35,000 when school is in session)...a big step down from Atlanta's 5.3 million. The cost of living is pretty low, but the town still has some nice restaurants and bars with live music (Proud Larry's, anyone?), plus a lake nearby and this seemingly awesome bookstore called Square Books. I think I'll be okay there...as long as I get some visits from Atlanta folks, maybe for some tailgating at football games?
The MBA program is really small, and the Center for the Study of Southern Culture seems like it's going to offer a lot of hands on experience and will let me work closely with faculty that might be really helpful in landing a job later on down the road. Plus, they offer courses in documentary fieldwork and photography which I think may be a direction I try and follow once I'm there. Working on a documentary about Southern culture or about Southern writers would pretty much be my dream job.
I am really nervous about getting in though. It is the only grad school I will apply to, more than likely. I graduated magna cum laude from Georgia State so I know my GPA isn't an issue; I'm just not sure how that will really stack up against other people. Plus, I have to take the GRE still, and I'm not totally confident in how I will do - I hate standardized testing (especially analogies), and I haven't had any sort of math class since I was 18. I know can get two good letters of recommendation, and the 500-word statement of purpose won't be a problem. It's just that damn GRE - seriously scares the living daylights out of me.
I'm pretty nervous about what my finances will be like down there. Luckily, Ole Miss's tuition isn't too costly in comparison to other grad schools; if I go full time, out of state tuition in fees will be $5,000 a semester. Once I can claim residency, it will be split in half to about $2,500. Today at work I looked at a bunch of scholarships & grants that I want to apply for, and I'm going to try to get an assistantship so I can get a tuition waiver and maybe a living stipend. I probably will still take out of a loan because if possible, I'd like to be a TA and go to school full-time and avoid working and doing something like waiting tables. I need to check out some financial aid books from the library and fill out FAFSA when its that time. I'm going to try and start saving some money for when I do move, but honestly, it's hard to save money when you hardly make enough to live in the first place...
In non-school related news, as trashy as it is, I Love Money is an amazing show as pure entertainment. Oh, VH1 - always keepin' it classy. Mr. Boston might be the most awkward individual alive. Bless his heart.
Also, big ups to the Braves for winning the record-setting 17 inning game at Turner Field last night! We can always rely on Mark Teixeira to do something amazing and manage to adjust himself more than anyone else on the field while doing it.
Last weekend I went & looked at a basement apartment in a house owned by an Emory grad student in her mid-20s. I really liked the house, and she seemed really nice. It has a private entrance and a fenced in backyard; it's 1200 square feet (twice the size of my apt now), most of which is in the bedroom. I probably will end up buying some room dividers and making one half the bedroom and one half an "office" with my desk and such. It is a hideous salmon color with wood paneling that I definitely am going to paint a more neutral color. The bathroom is bigger than what I have now, and the living room is small but doable. The kitchen is a half kitchen with only a fridge, sink, and very little counter space. However, I am not exactly known for my culinary skills (that'd be Josh's job), so I don't need a big kitchen although if I did, I can use the one upstairs There is no washer/dryer hookup downstairs, but I have full access to the one upstairs. The rent is $75 cheaper than what I pay now, and my utilities would be split three-ways with the other tenants upstairs. I'm definitely going to go with it - this marks the fourth year in a row that I have made a move.
I leave you with one of my favorite pictures of Drake ever. This was on his first birthday last week with his new chicken toy.