So you want to better yourself?

Posted: June 29, 2010 by Adrian Sanders in Rants and Raves

Good morning everyone!  We hope you have been enjoying reading our vents and frustrations here on Road Rage with A&A.  Today, I want to discuss something that has really got under my skin as of late.  For those who know me (and in a few seconds, those who don’t), you know I am planning to better myself in life and go back to school to further my education.  This can be such a headache and the government sure doesn’t make it any easier on us.  I went and filled out the proper forms online, telling the government once again how much money I make, only to be informed that I don’t qualify for any grants to help me make it through school.  This drives me crazy to know that I work 40 hours a week to pay my bills and stay afloat only to be told that I cant receive and financial help to better myself.

Lets rewind a bit.  The year is 1999, Adrian just graduated high school (yep that’s right, I just spoke in third person).  I gave it some thought to continuing my education and studying computer technology.  I had been told all my years of high school that due to certain circumstances in my personal life, I wouldn’t have to worry about money for college…it should be paid for.  Well if that wasn’t blowing smoke up the ole rear end then I don’t know what is.  Imagine my surprise when I went to fill out my financial aid paper work only to be told, yep you guessed it, I don’t qualify for government grants.  You want to hear the funny part?  I was making like $7.00 per hour driving a delivery truck for an electrical supply company!  Granted, that was a little more than flipping burgers at the time, but I had bills to pay.  Does the government really think I get to just pocket all of my take home pay?

So, fast forward to 2002 when I decided to move to North Carolina to go to school.  I went and filled out my financial aid paper work, and lo and behold my $8.00 per hour working at a retail chain was entirely too much income to qualify for a grant!  Now this time I was living on my own with apartment rent, utilities, phone bill, cable bill, truck payment, etc to pay…..and didn’t qualify for one dime from good ole Uncle Sam!  So rather than giving up, I got the loans, went to school and graduated with a 3.9 GPA and perfect attendance.  I landed a great job but later ended up coming back to Alabama because I just wasn’t happy where I was at.

So now, fast forward to today.  I have been in my current job for over three years now, but I have decided I know I can do better.  Every job I have been interested in applying for requires some sort of degree in Mechanical Engineering.  So naturally that is what I have decided to go back to school for.  With that said, a few weeks ago I filled out all my financial aid information online.  Imagine my surprise when I was told I still didn’t qualify for a grant (do you sense the sarcasm?).  So I have accepted the fact that I refuse to be a lazy bum who doesn’t want to work, is a menace to society, or lives at home without a job just so I can qualify for a federal grant to put my butt through school.  I have more self respect than that.  It just aggravates me to no end that those of us who work every day to pay our bills (sometimes even on time HA!) cant get a little help to better ourselves to contribute to an already failing society.  To be honest, Im not even asking for it to be paid in full….just help me out a little.  Help the ones who want to be helped!  I have already had the privilege of going to a higher education facility with some of these failures who are going to school on my tax dollars…..and yes I said failures.  I don’t group everyone in there as a whole, but there are some people who really don’t understand what they have going for them.

My father instilled good morals in me to work for a living, so I will continue to do so.  I will be in debt to the government for school loans a good chunk of my lifetime, but Im doing it to better myself.  The late Randy Pausch once said, “When you see yourself doing something badly and nobody’s bothering to tell you anymore, that’s a very bad place to be”.  I never want to be that failure that people no longer care about.  Its aggravating that our fearless leader wont help those who need it…..only the ones who want it.  And if you really think about that statement, there is a huge difference.  I may not be doing what it takes (or doesn’t take) to qualify for a grant, but I will do what it takes to move forward in my life regardless.  I refuse to be held back!

**For those of you who are not familiar with Randy Pausch, I urge you to take the time and watch his “Last Lecture” at the link provided below.  Its over an hour long but I promise you will get something out of it.  I have seen in many times and am about to watch it again, because I get more from it every time I watch.

  1. Adam Day says:

    Very good. I still say you should write for a profession. But saying that, you are fired. You are making me look bad! ha
    But anyways, I agree with everything, I’m now waiting on Uncle Sam to send me a letter and let me know if I can get any money for school from him. Doubt it.

  2. Adrian says:

    Good luck. You have a job and pay bills and are not a menace to society (well most of the time), so that apparently means you need no help.

  3. April says:

    I feel your pain about the grant money. I am a single mom working a full time job and can’t get a grant cause I make too much money. I also do not qualify for food stamps or any other government program cause I make too much money, even though I live paycheck to paycheck. Recently I found out that I can possibly get a grant but the school has to help me fill out some paper work. So I call the school and go down there only to be told to come back or that it will talk weeks to get it done. The schools are just as bad or worse then the government about turning you away or taking their time so your grant is taken away. The lack of help the school supplies is another thing that irks me. You would think people in those positions would be more willing to help you better yourself. guess not!

  4. Adrian says:

    Ive never had a problem with the schools helping with paperwork. It seems they are just as happy to smile and say “you owe us money if you want to go here”. Ive known people to say they lie on their paperwork in order to get grants. Im not sure how you can lie when its based on tax returns….seems like thats something easy to verify. Besides, Im not gonna stoop to that level. Ill just suck it up and go to school on my dollar….its the only way Im gonna better myself.

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