Spring ’08 semester is over

I finished up my spring 2008 semester at school. Last week was finals week.

This semester was more of a challenge than last. But I am not complaining. I took Introduction to Computer Programming Using OO and Logic and Comprehensive Databases. The former was a class I went to every Monday night and the latter was an online class. I was learning two concepts that were new to me at the same time. At first, this was a little difficult because I was trying to learn two different worlds at once. But once I got the hang of it, it was a lot better. I actually liked what I was learning, so that made it easier to want to study it until I got it. The main challenge for me was that when I got home from work, I was tired and the last thing I wanted to do was more thinking and I did not want to sit in front of a computer anymore. Plus, I have been learning new tasks at work as well. So it was a brain overload in the beginning.

I aced my final exams and final grades. I received an A in every class I took this year. Of course, I only took 6 credits per semester, but I do have a full-time day job. I do wish I could take more classes per semester so that I could finish sooner but that just isn’t going to happen. I’d rather take a longer time to graduate and actually understand what I’m learning and do well rather than just skate along.
And I’m guessing that when I take more advanced programming and database classes, it’s going to be even harder and I will have to study even more. And all As might not happen again (though I will still aim for that, even if it doesn’t happen).

My teachers were great. My programming teacher has had many years of experience as a respected computer programmer. He has been doing that for over 30 years and was a part of some crucial software that came up in the 70s and 80s. He’s been a project manager for some big companies and has done some major things. You can tell that he’s passionate about his field and that he actually wants to help us understand. I was curious in the beginning of the semester as to why he’d go through the time and effort of getting a teaching degree when he already had an established career and I presume he was making more than enough money. I think he just loves what he does a lot and wants to share his knowledge and experience. He had a different personality than most teachers and a dry sense of humor. I don’t think a lot of the students in the class really got him, but I did.
About half of the class dropped out. I don’t think it was because of the teacher, though.

My online teacher put a lot of effort into making the online class seem more like an actual classroom. I’ve heard that some online teachers aren’t so great and not very helpful, but she was a good teacher. She even put together some videos to show us things and she would email me personally when I posted questions on the bulletin board about a career as a Data Analyst. (Basically, it’s hard to find information about being a Data Analyst because that position goes by any different titles. I’m still a little confused but she did help clear things up).

I had originally planned on taking the summer off and going back in the fall, like most students. But I think I am actually going back in the first week of June. There’s some stuff in the works that’s supposed to happen in the Fall, so I want to either only take one class or just take off altogether that semester.

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