Getting Educated

Subject: Getting Educated
From: "GALVIN, KATHLEEN" <KATHGA -at- SAFECO -dot- com>
To: "'TECHWR-L -at- LISTS -dot- RAYCOMM -dot- COM'" <TECHWR-L -at- LISTS -dot- RAYCOMM -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 17 Sep 1999 08:14:50 -0700

Tom Murrell wrote: "I just wonder if I would be better off if I had a few
classes to go with my practical experience."

I would heartily recommend it. In the words of my inestimable instructor at
the University of Washington, Carl Chatfield, "This [technical
communication] is one place academia is way ahead of business." The body of
knowledge regarding what works in conveying information is large and
growing.

I was in your same position, a BA in English and 2 ½ years of graduate work
under my belt, making good money and working steadily as a tech writer. But
I kept getting glimpses of the information that I didn't have, so I went
through the UW's Technical Writing and Editing certificate program. It took
9 months and over $3,000 of my own money but I'd do it again in a heartbeat.
It validated that I did indeed know quite a bit, but I also acquired a ton
of information that I use daily on my job. I can speak with authority to
decision makers about what I recommend and why I recommend it, and I can
back it up with data. That's invaluable in a field where some people have us
pigeonholed as glorified word processors. NOBODY talks down to me. They know
I make a big, fat, contribution because I tell them I do and prove it daily.

I could bore you with anecdote after anecdote about how getting educated put
me in the catbird seat. I won't. But IMHO, you really can't afford to not
get educated. Increasingly, you are competing for jobs with people who have.




_________________________________________________
Kathy Galvin
SAFECO Network Services
Business Continuity Documentation Team

(206) 545-5540
kathga -at- safeco -dot- com <mailto:kathga -at- safeco -dot- com>

When something can be read without effort, great effort has
gone into its writing. - Enrique Jardiel Poncela
_________________________________________________






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