My degree has finally arrived. August 16th, 2019 was the big day. September 18th, 2019 they went in the mail. September 20th, 2019 I pulled them out of my mailbox. I have been awarded the degree of Associate of Applied Arts and Sciences Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning/Refrigeration Technology.

Associate of Applied Arts and Sciences

Woot!

It only took 1,081 days, just 14 days shy of 3 years. I’m glad I did it, but I’m not sure what I get out of it. You know, beyond the satisfaction of going to college, educating myself, and completing a goal. I mean, I’ve been doing HVAC for 20 years, this associate degree doesn’t really change anything. But, I did it!

As an added bonus, and I guess I should have anticipated it, I also received the HVAC technology certificate. I did not actually apply to receive that, so it’s a nice bonus that they saw that I had fulfilled those requirements and sent me that as well.

HVAC/R Technology Certificate

I have to say, the wording on these official documents is a bit lackluster. If I were to tell you that I satisfactorily fulfilled the requirements for anything, I think the base assumption would be that I’d done the bare minimum. I’m sure it’s all in the interpretation, but I’m not going to be impressed.

Despite the cynical tone, I’m very happy to finally have this piece of paper in hand. I put a lot of hours into getting this degree. I enjoyed the college experience and there is a big part of me that wishes I was continuing on to a Bachelor degree, but I just can’t justify it in my mind. It’s a lot more time. The working life of any such degree would be relatively short. But mainly, it’s a LOT of money to go to university and I’m already looking at a not insignificant amount of student loan debt.

So, for now I’m going to bask in the reflected light from these two pieces of paper, knowing that I accomplished a thing and that I accomplished it with aplomb.

63 Credits / 232.360 Grade Points / 3.688 GPA

And the final score: an Associate Degree from Grand Rapids Community College.

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