Free tuition? Nah...
October 28, 2008 7:59 PM   Subscribe

How do I best explain to my employer, a prestigious & expensive American Ivy League school, that I won't be taking advantage of the incomparable tuition discount and will instead finish my masters with a small-but-well-regarded British polytechnic?

I love my job! I raise money for a living and have done so for about three years. This job is perfect for the kind of stewardship training I need to back up the direct mail and internet giving experience I already have.

One of the reasons I decided to do my MA with a British school is that I can't transfer the credits I already have to a program where I work. A university there offered to let me finish my dissertation with them so long as I come for one week of discussion and then come when it is reviewed to make a defense. This is reasonable, the school has a sterling reputation in the field I was in when I learned fundraising, and I have already done all of the coursework leading up to the dissertation - so the process will be vetted all the way through for irregularities and I will be in constant contact with an adviser.

My boss has been hounding me not to start a degree yet. She thinks classes and work will be a strain. I heartily agree and want to tell her I have found other options. But I worry she will misconstrue it to mean I am looking another job or will soon go back into my previous industry. This isn't the case.

Please help me make that crystal clear to her and this university.
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (7 answers total)
Sounds like you've got your discussion all laid out, the above all seems very reasonable. What's the problem?
posted by RustyBrooks at 8:02 PM on October 28, 2008

My boss has been hounding me not to start a degree yet.

"I've already been working on one, actually - I've got all the credits already and just need to finish my dissertation!"
posted by Solon and Thanks at 8:11 PM on October 28, 2008 [1 favorite]

(Just empathize what you've told us here. It won't strain your work because you've found another situation, but you nonetheless look forward to spending a long time at your current job which you love.)
posted by Solon and Thanks at 8:16 PM on October 28, 2008

"Wow, boss - I found a way I can finish off my degree without having to retake any classes! $British_Institution will accept all my previous coursework, and now I just have to do my dissertation. I was really worried that I'd have to quit this job to finish my degree, because like you said, classes AND work would be tough, but now I can stay working here and just work on my dissertation in my own time!"
posted by jacalata at 8:36 PM on October 28, 2008

One problem with this: There are no polytechnics in Britain anymore. We turned them all into universities in 1992.
posted by handee at 5:48 AM on October 29, 2008 [1 favorite]

Why do you have to tell them at all? Just finish the thing on your own terms, then show the little paper you get for doing so.
posted by cjorgensen at 6:27 AM on October 29, 2008

Why is this personal choice of your education any business your boss needs to be concerned about? It is your life and she should stop hounding you. When you get your degree, update your resume and let her know you've got the degree.
posted by onhazier at 6:37 AM on October 29, 2008

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