Saturday, January 1, 2022

Empowered: The Grad School Chronicles (1.02)

(Restart Story) 

You're feeling a bit too tired to ride your bike, so you head to the bus stop in front of your apartment instead. There's a few other grad students already lined up, one of whom is flipping through a book on Foucault and muttering something about "the panopticon." 

"What class are you reading that for," you ask. The man looks up in a start, his bushy red eyebrows aimed at you suspiciously. 

"Intellectualism in the 20th Century." He turns his back to you and returns to his task. 

Alright then. Nobody else around you looks interested in chatting, so you pop in some earphones and switch on some of your favorite music. Soon after, the bus arrives. You pay the bus driver a dollar (grad students don't ride for free) and take one of the last seats near the back of the bus. 

The drive over is uneventful, and within minutes you've arrived on campus. It's only a short walk from the bus stop before you've made it to your destination. 

Looming before you is the steely gray edifice of Eliot University's department of social sciences and humanities. Somewhere inside is the room where your first history graduate seminar will be held. 

Your heart leaps inside your chest at the idea of finally beginning graduate school. You had always loved history. To you it represented the pinnacle of the academic experience, and you relished the opportunity to experience the frenetic exchange of ideas and critical thinking again. 

A few minutes of exploration later, you find the seminar room and enter. You're a little early so there are many available seats.  Because you'd like to get to know your cohort a bit better, you decide to sit beside one of the two people who arrived before you.


I hope you are enjoying this short story. If you can spare it, please consider donating to my coffee fund so that I can keep writing stories like these. Thank you again for reading my work! 

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About The Author

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Nicholas Garcia (M.A.) is a PhD Candidate at the University of California, Davis. He is also a Co-Founder of the Bulosan Center for Filipino Studies. Previously, he contributed to and the Davis Humanities Institute.