Surviving Education

There are a few mantras that I'm clinging to right now.

Just because this is hard doesn't mean it's bad.

This too shall pass

Last week of these classes! Then you get a break!

But honestly it feels like an endurance race right now. Will I survive to cross the finish line? Or is a fortnight of going to bed at 2am going to kill me? (I'm not British, I just like the word “fortnight”. Never played the game.)

And I still think it'll be worth it. I have learned a lot in my degree program and it would be a shame to throw all of that away just because this week is bad.

The irony is that these classes were supposed to be the easy ones. I'm taking IS classes, and I've been a programmer for 14 years. And the actual coding is easy. What's making them hard is the bane of all education: TEAMS.

I'm a team lead at work. I love working with real software teams. But a team you are with for one semester is nothing like a real software development team. You're not working together daily, you're hurredly assigning tasks on a project that fits into none of your schedules, trying to make sense of one another's working styles.

In my six-ish years of higher education, four undergrad and two graduate, I've had one good team. And we only became a good team because we had worked together on various bad teams in previous classes. So when we got to choose a team and all chose each other it was magic. We got things done.

There's probably a lesson in there, but I'm too tired to learn it. Here's hoping I make it to next week.