It’s been only 72 hours or so since I’ve been back in DC. What an amazing weekend! So great to catch up with so many peeps, and to meet a few new folks as well! This chapter of my life has just begun, and it’s already gotten off to a great start.
As I consider what I’ll be doing during my period of “funemployment” back in DC, I think now would be a great time to take a look at how I’m stacking up to my goals for the year:
- Get into graduate school. Mission Accomplished. Got into both schools I had applied to, but unfortunately received no financial aid from either school. I have until May 1st to decide, and am really in limbo with this decision at the moment. I still have a boatload of undergraduate student loans to pay off. Even if I deferred till Fall 2013, I’d be looking at cumulative undergrad/grad school loans in the six figures. Not too interested in having that hanging over my head for the next decade of my life.
- Get published in an academic journal. I don’t even have a topic in mind. Also, as this relates to grad school, if I decide not to attend, this goal is also longshot.
- Pass the TOCFL Master or HSK Level 5 (Advanced). The HSK is offered monthly, and I’m taking the HSK Level 4 (Intermediate with Honors) next month. I’ve always struggled to maintain my language goals, and I figured it might be better to take baby steps in order to achieve a much larger goal. To this end, I’m registered to take the HSK Level 4 (Intermediate with Honors) next month. My performance on that test will help me determine what I’ll need to focus on in preparation for HSK Level 5. Ultimately, my goal is to obtain some Chinese language certification by year-end.
- Get a policy or IR-related job or internship, preferably in DC. Still working on this, though given my current situation I’m more open-minded to positions in other fields (i.e. consulting).
- Learn to code. Completed the first few lessons of Code Academy, but stopped during the Chinese New Year break. I think I need to find a more tangible goal, such as certification, to keep me motivated on this one.
- Run a half-marathon. Haven’t registered for one, nor have I gotten back into the running habit since my return. Currently, I’m thinking a better alternative would be to start small and build up: First run a 5k, then 10k, 15k, and ideally a half-marathon by year-end.
- Blog at least once a week. Fail. Didn’t post anything last week, though had two posts the week prior. Time to get back on the train!
And that’s that. Going through this list has reminded me of what I should be focusing on. Hopefully I’ll have made more progress on all fronts by the end of Q2. Wish me luck!