Fatherhood is not easy. Being a working dad is even more difficult. So, being a MEM student while working a full-time job AND raising a family? Well, our MEM dads all agree that family, work, and school are tough to balance, and that time management is key.
“When I started the MEM program, I was naÏve enough to think that our newborn son Charlie would sit quietly playing with stuffed animals while I did my class readings and homework, and therefore being a new parent while in school would be a breeze. After quickly discovering that infants need more than a plush bunny to be entertained for several hours, I had to learn new time management skills to make sure I maximized my fun time with him and still got my work work and schoolwork done. In the end, while trying to balance so many different tasks was exhausting and stressful over the past two years, I did learn to prioritize my time on what was important to me, and eventually ended up finding the balance between Decision Tools homework and playing with LEGOs.” –Christopher Rader.
So how do these dedicated dads manage to do it all? It takes a lot of planning and some serious cooperation.
“Being a full-time professional, part-time student graduate student, a husband, and a father does not come without sacrifice. Figuring out where to pour your energy is like managing a project, you must understand your priorities first and define your objective and then scope from there. For me it’s family, work, school, and friends. However there are times when those priorities need to shift to work, school, and more school. That is where Ryder’s mom, my wife Amy, comes in; she takes on the extra household work and child care while managing her own demanding career at Sears Holdings Corp. I am thankful and indebted to her for the extra burden this graduate program causes and perhaps it’s her sacrifices that propel me to focus and absorb everything possible from my course work so that I can deliver value back to our family through advancement in my career.” –Mike Vesperman
But it sounds like these fantastic fathers wouldn’t trade it for the world. In fact, they are very much looking forward to raising up the next generation of MEM students.
“Being a father is the single most rewarding aspect of my life already. I look at my MEM degree as a means to further secure my ability to help my family thrive, even though there are short term sacrifices today. And it’s too soon to tell for sure, but I think [my wife and I] may have a couple of future engineers on our hands. They are so very attentive to figuring out how things work. I’m sure I will have more than one disassembled speaker, DVD player, or other device on my hands in the future. I can’t wait until they are of an age where I can share more of what I do in my work with them.” –Corey Schoenherr
Sounds like you’re doing great work, guys, so keep it up! Happy Father’s Day to you and to all our MEM Dads! You’re all #1!