Wow. You’re still reading these? Look at you!
Let’s check out 2018!
This was probably the least eventful year for me yet.
I finished up my final and most stressful semester at grad school, and got my Master’s in International Affairs, with specializations in Homeland Security and U.S.-Japan Relations, in May 2018.
I had a couple of job offers at the start of the year, which required me to start before my degree was completed. I would have been able to accept them if not for one professor, which refused to allow me attend classes remotely—which was a popular option in my program, as it was a professional graduate program. Due to this, I had to reject those offers, as I was so close to finishing it made no sense to attempt to take a leave mid-way through my final semester.
Ultimately, I received a promotion with my current company and was asked to transfer to Southern California for the position. I moved to SoCal around the end of July and am still going. The move was stressful and adjusting to life in SoCal has been difficult. The branch I’m currently working in is in my hometown/county, so I am overall familiar with the area. However, practically everyone I was close with, nearly a decade ago, has moved away or we have drifted apart. I have a few people I still consider close friends here, but I can count them all on one hand. Our work schedules also constantly contradict one another, and it is difficult for us to meet up.
The biggest challenge that I have faced here is regarding work. I was hoping that with the transfer, I would have a better experience with the company and management. I was wrong. While working with the branch in PA, I mainly had an issue with the hostile work environment due to management. The job itself I did not hate—I didn’t love it by any means, but it was tolerable. Here, I cannot tell if I dislike the job or the management more. It varies day by day.
The most eventful and enjoyable thing that I did in 2018 was apply for the JET Programme for the 2019 year. I will make a detailed post about this in the future, and maybe turn it into a series. I started applying in August, almost immediately after I moved to SoCal. With the application due in October, I wanted to have everything compiled and submitted as soon as possible, while having it at the best possible quality.
After submitting my JET application, I spent the rest of 2018 just passing time at work and waiting for preliminary results in January. Queue endless anxiety and imposter syndrome. Woo!
This is it. You stuck with me through the ups and downs over the past 3 years. We’re about to enter the present and you’ll want to buckle up for this one. Let the 2019 ride begin here.