Thursday, 19 May 2016

I'm gonna make a change...

I apologise. I have been neglecting this blog. I published my last post two months ago!

In my defence, I have been busy. But, in reality, not so busy that I couldn't find time for writing. In fact, I have been writing - I've just been doing it for my other blog.

You see, I'm in the process of making a change...

In the midst of juggling family, work, volunteering and life, I've decided to go back to university!

After our youngest was born, we decided not to have any more babies. My husband took himself off to get a vasectomy and I began to think about the future. I realised that I had spent all of my thirties building a family and treading water in my career.

Don't get me wrong - I genuinely like my job and the people I work with. I'm given a high level of autonomy, I get to use my expertise and specialist knowledge, and the role plays to my strengths. It is well paid and comes with a pension, flexitime, security and an easy commute.

But, if I'm honest, it's not a job that I ever really aspired to... and I look around the corporate structure unsure of my next step. Do I want promotion? Yes, that would bring a higher salary and greater responsibility but offset against loss of flexitime, more travel and probably an increase in hours. Could I make a sideways move? Probably, but the team I work in now has the remit that I find the most interesting. So, why not just stay where I am? Well, I could do but I've been in this role for three years (which makes it the longest job I've ever had!) and I don't want to be doing it until I retire!

So, I've thought hard and rediscovered what makes me tick: science!

I fell in love with science at high school. I had some truly inspirational and passionate teachers, who recognised my potential and encouraged me to pursue my interest. My 'A' level years were probably my favourite period in education - I was studying only the subjects that interested me the most and I was good at them.

Seven years later, I left university with a Masters degree and a PhD. But, whilst my undergraduate degree had fulfilled my interest and left me wanting more, my doctoral studies had a more negative effect on me. I didn't want a career in academia or research. So, I set out on the path that led me to where I am now.

But the times I felt the happiest and most in control of my career destiny were the ones where I was a scientist. And I can feel science calling me back...

I have been offered a place on a part-time course in science communication, starting in September. Today, I chose which modules I want to study. I feel so excited about it and ready for the challenge. It feels great to be planning to do something for myself. And it might just lead me to my 'dream' job...