Over the past quarter, I have reflected on many topics. Though most of these meanderings have centered on job acquisition or graduate school, I have not written about the one project that has dominated most of my time and energy. This project is what academics call a “thesis.” With its hulking requirements and cumbersome expectations, the thesis commands an unparalleled grip on one’s personal and academic life.
Some of you may wonder why I am writing a thesis all together. Admittedly, that thought has passed through my mind as well. Most Public Administration programs do not typically require the in-depth investigation conducted during thesis research unless a student is PhD bound. Though I have considered pursuing a doctorate degree, I have decided to postpone this eventuality in light of job opportunities in higher education. Thus, my rationale for writing a thesis stems from pure academic curiosity.
Entering graduate school, I committed myself to intellectual betterment and regarded thesis research as the best way to enhance my conative abilities. I believe in conducting research for research’s sake and I want to create new knowledge. As I begin my final quarter at Ohio University, the stakes are higher than ever. In the coming months I will finish my thesis, defend my research, graduate, and find a job. Strangely, I am not nervous. In fact, I feel stronger, smarter, and faster than ever. Though I am a long way from graduation, I know this experience has made me a better student and individual.