So you got into the MCM program…now what?

It took me 4 years of college and another year into Grad School to figure out these tips for maximizing my mindful learning. While this was geared towards USC Annenberg’s MCM Program, these tips are easily applied to any schooling experience you’re going through in a formal program or even in a 1-day class.

So you got into the MCM program…now what?.


There has been a big countdown going on in recent past and it’s finally coming to fruition.  I’m not talking about:

Baby New Year 2013!
Thanks rochelle, just rochelle for the photo!

Nor am I pushing the 12/21/12 end of the Mayan Calendar

Beautiful and mystical Mayan Calendar
Thanks insert screen name here for the photo

I’m realizing just how unprepared I am for a zombie apocalypse and am now slightly concerned about my goal to have a plan for when it occurs.

Hopefully I won’t lose my head and will stay calm!
Thanks Visceral e Insolúvel for the graphic!

The end of my first semester as a graduate student is going to be over in 1 week!

Sound the reveille!

I’m trying to get it all done and wrapped up but at the same time am SUPER excited to have a bit more free time for the time being until next semester!

I already know where my journey will begin…

I’ll be wandering first through District 12!

Help me decide where to wander next!  I have 4 weeks to pack in as much living and relaxing as possible!  WTF? When’s the Finish? Next Tuesday officially, next Thursday after our one dangling live web session.

Reflection of the end
Thanks tind for the photo.

I’ll definitely refer to my 101 in 1001 and Naturally, Kids lists for fun adventures, but tell me what you recommend.  What great thing have you done since September that you just know I ought to try?!

I’ll tell you one thing, I look forward to wandering some with you and catching up a bit!


I’ve got two kids who are skilled communicators.  One blows me away while regurgitating facts, details and dates, spitting them out in a way that captivates me like no professor could. The other one sharply launches zingers that envelop me in an explosion of laughter.  If they worked together, embracing their differences, they could go on the road flattening audiences in uncontrollable fits of eye-watering amusement.  Instead, they battle each other – accurately pushing each other’s buttons during normal big brother/little sister squabbles.  I’d forgotten, until this week, how big a part delivery plays in communication.

Well Hot Dog!
WTF: We’ll talk frankly

Upon finding out that I got accepted into graduate school, I shared the news with my daughter. “Guess what? Mommy’s going back to school!”  My daughter’s face squinched up and I tried desperately to translate the expressions on her face ranging from “Is my summer over?” to “Do I have homework tonight?” to “Do we have to move and leave all my friends? Tomorrow?” As her eyes grew misty, I asked, “Are you ok? Do you have questions?” Eyes down, she quietly squeaked, “I think I’m just hungry.”

Whatchu talkin’ ’bout Mama?

I thought I’d discussed my degree program application enough but realized that conversations may have been aimed more towards her brother, bypassing her ears. Truthfully – I hadn’t mentioned it much because no sense in getting people excited in case I didn’t get in.  After a few unsuccessful attempts, countering her vehement protests that she had been upset at all, I got her communicating again. I said, “It seemed like you have questions about what it means for Mommy to go to school. What were you thinking when I told you?” She bravely responded, “I thought you would be a teenager again and that you aren’t allowed to take care of children any more.”

You thought what?!

After thinking, “I wish” about recapturing one’s teenage looks, I reassured her that I get to study something I love, that I will participate in family homework time, and that, someday, it will help me get a better job for all of us.  Still vague, but clarifying that we’re all in it for the long haul.  Whew! What a first warm up lesson for my impending Communications master’s degree.

You don’t have to live in LA to be a part of this program! But being able to get student tix to football games makes me giddy!

Share your story & you may reach the one person who needed to hear it most.

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