Sunday, January 3, 2010

L'embarras du choix

At a ward activity with my church in Paris, there was a potluck with some of the most delicious-looking foods I've ever seen.

As I stood before the buffet-style setup trying to decide where to start, a member of the bishopric came up beside me with the same "Where do I start?" look of hesitation on his face.

"Ahh..." he says, "L'embarras du choix." Roughly translated, that conveys the idea of "overwhelmed by my options" or "spoilt for choice."

And that's the perfect description of my life right now. Really, where do I start?

I've been thinking a lot about graduate school, but for the life of me I can't settle on one program over another. It's kind of distressing, mostly because the deadlines are all coming up soon, and I'll need to get cracking on the GRE for some of the applications.

I feel pulled in several different directions. These are the programs I'm thinking of applying to:

-French studies
-French Teaching
-Language Acquisition
-Literacy Education

If I did either of the last two, I would want to do both and end up working for a non-profit with a focus on literacy education (either K-12 or adult ed). But I also feel like I should work in that field for at least a year or two to determine whether that's something I would want to do as a full-time career.

I think with French Studies or French Teaching it's almost a no-brainer that I at least apply, but the catch with that is I don't think I would want to teach secondary, so I would have to also do a doctorate. Yowza. I'm 28. You do the math.

They're all sort of related, having to do with literacy, teaching, and language... but they're all different enough that they don't really overlap. Except maybe Language Acquisition and TESOL. Those probably have some significant overlap in the theories I would study.

So, I'm not gonna lie... I think I would love them all. I'm not really making salary a part of the decision, because choosing a career based on how much I would make is a recipe for disaster (based on previous experience).

That's all. Just needed to get it off my chest.


Jess said...

Ahh for the days of childhood when the hardest decision was where to play and what to wear. I haven't figured out my next step either.

Billy Bob Bambino Bombabious Baby the Third said...

Are you thinking about Public Administration? That would be awesome! You could be my boss some day - if you work for a city as a city manager... That's my vote!

PS - Why isn't it spelled TEASOL? Is "as" not good enough to be in the acronym? I much prefer acronyms that sound good spoken, like NASA or TOEFL (I know that one's a bit clunky, but it sounds fun - toe-full...) It would be much easer to say "tea-sol" than Tee ee ehs oh ell... Just my $0.02...

Erin said...

Hey Sarah, my mom needs something translated into French for her work, and wondered whether you feel competent enough in your skills to be able to do it correctly. They would pay you. Please e-mail me at eringirl13 at gmail dot com (since I don't have your e-mail address) and let me know if it is something you would be interested in doing/trying. Thanks!

(Oh, and I have a friend who did TESOL and loved it. Good luck with all of your choices ahead of you.)

Meridith said...

I love your writing, Sarah, especially how you began with another experience and tied in a French phrase. Ah. :)