A few years ago, I learned about a new program our Church was offering called Pathways. It was a way to attend school part online and part in the classroom. Due to a misunderstanding, I did not participate that year. About part way through the year, I realized I could have gone, and looked forward to attending the next fall. However, before that could happen, I got pregnant with Eric. I was debating signing up anyways, as he would be about 9 months old, but I didn't feel right about it, so I waited. In October, my husband got called as Bishop of our ward, which validated my decision to hold off.
I thought it would be a long time before I would get the chance to attend Pathways. Usually, Bishops serve for an average of 4-6 years. Then, unexpectedly, the ward boundaries were re-arranged, which moved us into a new branch, only two and a half years in. My chance for Pathways was much closer now.
As the start date got closer, I started to hesitate, wondering if now was really the right time. You need an entire year of being able to attend the classes on a Thursday night, plus the time to do all the classwork and studying necessary. As of right now, we have nine children still at home. (My oldest, actually got married right before I started, and moved to Idaho.) My youngest two, are still under three. Yet, I got the distinct feeling, that if this was something I wanted, now was the time to do it. This year.
Once your first year is over, you can space out the rest. The first year is to establish 'residency' at BYU-I, and then you can complete your degree as you have time. The first year however, is a specific course of study, held during set times of the year. In order to complete it, you need one fall, one spring, and one summer semester.
So, I started. It has been Amazing!!! I love it. The best thing is, is that it is already helping me in my life. I have already used many quotes and lessons learned in my religion class for my kids during Family Home Evening. I have used the knowledge from my Life Skills class in studying for classes I teach at Church, as well as helping me homeschool. Just this past week, we studied about Lifelong Learning. There were many stories and quotes I shared with them about the importance of always learning.
One other thing that was a point this week, was the request by Church Leaders, to join in the 'conversation'. To take the time to share our beliefs online, and use the internet for good. It reminded me of this blog, and re-inspired me to make a concerted effort, to post at least once a week, something good that has happened.