Classes start back for me tomorrow night. raying: I am taking two this semester: History of the New South and Historical Research Methods. I will also continue working on my major research project ("a thesis which is not a thesis"...my advisors joke). The course on the new south has 10 textbooks and only one of those books is small! I about fell out when I saw that. Still I think it will be a great class. Anyway I am still stressing over my PhD options. One friend told me that I am worrying about building the bridge before the highway is even laid (or something like that). However I am a long term planner, I like to lay things out "just so" years in advance (I think it is also called OCD :laugh: ). Anyway I have now counted Southern Seminary out. I was interested in their PhD/Church History program but they will not work with me at all. They demand 90hrs in theology (etc) before they would even consider admission to the program. What that means is that I would be required to earn a THIRD masters degree and that is not going to happen. George Mason University's PhD in American History is still looking good, as are simular programs at UNC-Greensboro, The University of South Carolina, and George Washington University. I have also set my eyes upon a PhD in Systematic Theology from Piedmont Baptist College. Why? It would be a first PhD and it contains a historical element. I am also no longer sure I want to teach at a university/seminary. There is a very good chance that I will be perfectly happy teaching history/religion at a community college for the rest of my life. If that proves to be the case I see no reason in moving to another state and all that goes along with that. I could stay put, teach, and commute to Winston-Salem. Why am I shying away from university teaching? Because I work at a university and I see what some of these professors have to do on top of their normal teaching/research. I have also worked at a community college and their teachers focused on teaching (etc). That is what I want to do...teach. However I do want a PhD and Piedmont would give me the chance to earn one. Interesting and, at this time, totally beside the point. I have to finish the program I am in and then I will probably teach for 2, 3, maybe 5 years before entering a PhD program of any sort. So I suppose the direction I take will be determined by where I am then and the direction I need to head in. It will sort of be like the Captain on the Enterprise (sp?) in the movie Star Trek I. He was asked where to go and he looked around and just pointed and said..."that way". The future is wide open, it and I are in the hands of the Lord, and I am sure it will interesting and fun. Despite all of my careful planning and mapping. Since I foresee that I will be very, very busy between work and school over the next few months I imagine that my posting habits will decrease. Well at least I have been able to join the 3,000 club this summer. So between work, research, surgery, and church/social activities, I have been a busy little poster this summer. What is sad is that I have not been on my jet ski once this summer. I did not even get around to putting it in the water until about a week ago, and there it sits. When I have had time I have not felt well enough to ride and when I have felt well enough I have not had the time. I guess this is what they call growing up??? It had to happen!!