Just a couple of weeks before Christmas, I submitted my final, final assignment for my Master’s Degree in Technical Writing from Utah State University. Upon receipt of my submission, my professor emailed me back and let me know that I had passed the course. Wow. What a cool feeling. Of relief. And accomplishment. And PRIDE!
I don’t think it’s an overstatement to say that this program (at Utah State University) has changed my life. I am a different person now. I am different at my core. I see the world in a different way now.
I don’t know if you are this way too but whenever I feel like I’ve accomplished something important, I tend to like to recognize major contributors. I mean, sure, I’ve achieved something here, but seriously, I didn’t do this alone. In fact, this achievement was born out of a complicated web of people, places and… other things.
Kent Clark: My Encourager. You had the vision, confidence, and expectation that I could achieve something, even before I did. (You know what I’m talking about and you know it’s true.) I learn from you and I love that about you.
Rob and Max: My boys. I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about what your mom can do, but I’ve always felt like you thought I could do anything. You guys have been good sports. I’ve been scatterbrained, forgetful, full of sh*t, and altogether flaky. Thank you for your graciousness.
(This has been the backdrop of my life for the last couple of years. Who deserves this? Not me. I’m not that good.)
Steph Wilson: The right person, the right words, at just the right time. Steph, I don’t know if you perceived this at the time, but your bright idea to study for the GRE and apply to the Tech Writing program came at just the right time. It was like I was looking at your face and hearing your words, but really, I was talking to an angel who let me know it was time to fulfill my destiny.
Flora Shrode: My Recommender. Flora, I’ve long believed that the librarians are the smartest people on campus. And it seemed like a long-shot that you would write for me a letter-of-recommendation, but you did and I will be forever grateful. I don’t know what you said, but it had to have been brilliant because, you are a librarian…. (I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that I love your personality, your humor and the fact that you ride your bike for long distances. Frankly, I miss you.)
John Jeon and Joel Gardner: My Brothers in FACT. John and Joel, you roped me in. You involved me in your projects, asked for help, my opinions, and involvement. You sort of duped me into thinking I had something to offer. I’ll never forgive you. (haha jk :)) I’ll never be able to thank you enough. You are good guys and everyday I miss working with you.
The Online Master’s Degree in Technical Writing from Utah State University: Dr. Keith Grant-Davie, Dr. David Hailey, Dr. Ron Shook, Dr. John McLaughlin, the Moyle Q. Rice Scholarship, and the English Department at USU. I can’t imagine that it has never occurred to you, but you do realize that this program is amazing, right? Do you realize that it helps people in ways that other programs and schools cannot, and that the outreach aspect of this program is invaluable? Surely you know that the asynchronous and remote nature of the program make it possible for people to accomplish things that would otherwise be out-of-reach. You know that, right? Thank you for existing. I am a big fan.
The Merrill-Cazier Library at USU: The intellectual center of campus and my workplace for six years. I started with the library in the old, original Merrill library. It was so old and cold, like a cave. But soon thereafter, the new Merrill-Cazier Library was built and it became one of my favorite places on earth. I loved the clean, aqua cast of the tempered glass, the rainbow cast of the microprocessors hanging in the former entryway, the warm cherry wood panel weave in the atrium, and the bridges suspended in air. Most of all though, I loved the atmosphere. This library is the intellectual center of campus. If you don’t get caught up in it, you’re not human.
Thanks everyone and everything. Your contributions have helped me and I am grateful.