Liz Swain 9:30 a.m., Dec. 13
Life as an Educated Peasant. Welcome to my blog.
Thank you for reading my first-ever blog. I am a San Diego native, born and raised in the South Bay, particularly, Chula Vista. I have also lived in Lincoln Acres, which is an unincorporated San Diego County community, Lakeside, Lemon Grove, Spring Valley, and Nestor. I attended St. Rose of Lima gradeschool, Chula Vista Junior High and High Schools, and San Diego State University. I received my B.A. Degree from State in December of 1983, graduating Summa Cum Laude with distinction in Psychology. I majored in Industrial/Organizational Psychology and minored in Sociology. I was accepted into the M.S. Program in the same major at S.D.S.U., and spent a couple of years working toward my Masters. I finished all of my coursework, but couldn't quite make it through my thesis. So I suppose I could be classified as an M.S. "a.b.t." (all but thesis).
When I first applied to S.D.S.U. for the Fall, 1978 semester, my sister Karen was already a college student. We, of course, both applied for financial aid. Our father was employed as a major appliance salesman at Two Guys, and our mother was a registered nurse for the County of San Diego. Although our parents' income was middle-class at best, neither of us qualified for financial aid. If we had applied to more expensive schools, we surely would have gotten some assistance, but since a State University education was still very affordable at that time, we had to pay our own way. For my first semester (full-time) fees, including my parking permit and other incidentals, I wrote the University a check for $237.
During most of my college career, I lived at home with my parents in Chula Vista. My father died in 1982, and my mother remarried in 1984. She moved into the San Carlos home of her new husband, but allowed us to continue living in the Chula Vista home which she and my father had bought in 1962, (When shopping for a house, Mom and Dad had to decide between the house near downtown Chula Vista, which was listed at $16,500., and a corner lot home in Leucadia, which was listed at $21,500.) It wasn't until 1985 that our stepfather helped convince Mom to kick us out and sell her house. That was the right decision for her, and certainly not unreasonable for us kids, all being adults. However, when I suddenly found myself out in the world, responsible for keeping a roof over my head, I had to leave grad school and get full-time work. Sometime around 1990, I looked into going back to finish my Masters. I was able to get "Validation of Recency" signatures from all my professors, indicating that they did not think I needed to repeat any coursework. When I took them to the graduate division dean, however, I was told that S.D.S.U. no longer had an M.S. program in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. He tried to steer me into the M.A. program in Experimental Psych, but I wasn't interested in backtracking a year's worth of classes, so I left University, never to return.