Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Decisions, decisions

I have been unemployed now for 7 weeks. Now, in today's economy, I realize that's a relatively short time, and while I could probably find something to occupy myself if I didn't NEED to work to support myself, I'm rapidly tiring of not working. I truly enjoy working in the construction industry. Back in 2000, when a temp agency I'd worked a few short term jobs for called me and asked me about working on a construction site, I was perfectly happy to try something new. The warning that they included about the fact that it would be on a job site, and well, construction workers have a bit of a reputation for being crude, rough, and sexist, didn't phase me, since I grew up with brothers, and I long ago learned to handle myself when I need to. I found my groove in that job. In the last 9 years, I've worked on both the general contractor and the subcontractor side. I can't really say that I like one or the other better, though I suspect that the experience I've had on the subcontractor side will help me work better on the GC side. I've been debating for a year or so, taking some classes toward certification that could make me more marketable in the industry, and increase my earning potential. There are 3 programs in the area. 1 is through a "satellite" sort of campus of a "university" in another state. I am a bit wary of such programs, especially those that suddenly pop up with multiple campuses in a specific area in a relatively short time, and advertise through SPAM. The second is through Northlake College, which is part of the Dallas County Community College. Thisn option would garner the same classes as the third option, because they are affiliated, at a more affordable rate, and the option to make payments on the courses, rather than having to come up with all of the money at once. The drawback is that the end result is an Associate of Applied Science, which seems, at least to me, a few steps backward, since I've already got my BA. I suppose that positives to this option include that several of the requirements for graduation I've already completed as they were required for my BA. I will have to retake College Algebra, which should be interesting, since I hate math, and the last time around I took the D and was happy because it did get me my 3 hours credit for graduation. The 3rd option is through the Construction Education Foundation, and while that would lead to a certificate, the costs are higher than Northlake, and not all of the courses are available both places, and it's a pay it all up front sort of situation. If I lived in reasonable driving distance Houston (let's just say HELL NO), Beaumont (again, HELL NO), San Marcos (DITTO), Lubbock, San Antonio, College Station, or Commerce, I could enroll at one of the universities in TX that offer a Bachelor's or more in Construction Management, but alas, I don't, and I have no desire to relocate right now, so that blows that option. Tomorrow I will look into getting more information from the coordinator of the program at Northlake, as I think he should be able to tell me something about both programs, since they are associated. Off to bed. Oh, and I haven't forgotten about sharing my adventures at Sterling, I was just too wiped out when I got home to get it together and posted, and today my brain was all focused on this school thing.

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