I Am Hermione

hermione3

Since I’ve gone back to school, I’ve discovered that I’m Hermione Granger.

With more than thirty credits (from many years ago but they transferred) I’m considered a sophomore at Penn State Berks. I started last summer, taking a course on graphic novels. Then this fall I took Comparative Religion (a dense and difficult course) and News Writing Practicum (writing for the campus paper). I’m now taking Writing for the Humanities and Reading Fiction.

Penn State Berks has a special program called Go-60 that allows anyone over sixty to take two courses a semester free.

You read that right: FREE

I’m going to Penn State free. I pay a small tech fee and buy my books. But the courses are free.

That’s the easy part.

I have to study—a lot and I’ve been driving my family crazy with the studying.

You see—I’m serious about this. Go BIG or Go HOME.

That’s how I’m like Hermione Granger. I’ve got to do it better than everyone else because at more than sixty-five years old, I’m the “half-Muggle” at Hogwarts—er—Penn State. I need to show something to the university, to the professors, to the other students – heck, to myself—that not only can I do it, I can do it with an A. I’d love to get my degree and I’m working toward a Bachelor’s in Professional Writing—maybe even a double major.

But I’m having a wonderful time.

Even studying.

After all these years I still love learning.

And the important thing is: I’m keeping my brain going.

At sixty-six, I’m a student.

And in a few years I’ll be a graduate.

I enjoy being around the younger students – some of them more than forty years my junior.  For the most part they’re bright, considerate, and friendly. I have just one issue with them–with some of them.

They don’t always do their work on time.

I do. See? Hermione, I am.

I understand some may have other commitments, a job and even a family.

But so do I. I write in my “spare” time. I take my husband to appointments. I do have some housework to do. The difference is I get my homework done by the date on the syllabus.

If you can’t get the work done, drop the class. {Professors give out the syllabus with a list of required books and schedule of assignments during the first class—some even before the first class).

So, yes, I’m serious.

I respect the work the professors do to involve us in a class—to help us learn.

I respect the other students who’ve done the work.

But most of all I respect myself.

I guess I’ll just embrace my inner Hermione and learn.

Would I suggest to seniors like me that they should go back to school?

Yes—yes—I would.

Even if you got your degree forty years ago, there are new subjects out there—new things to learn—new people to meet.

Go out and find your inner Hermione.


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