I explained to the admissions people at my school that I had a B.A from the University of Missouri, a M.A. from St. Louis University and several credit hours towards a Ph.D. at St. Louis U. I also have business certificates from Washington University and grad credits from other universities.
Nope...doesn't matter, they explained. For the State you have to show a copy of your high school diploma or a copy of the unofficial transcript. If you don't have a high school diploma you can show a GED. For students from other countries where the high school diploma is impossible to acquire, you can also take a special qualifying test.
Since I didn't have a lot of time, I had to either figure out where in my house my high school diploma might be hiding or get a copy of my transcript from Bishop Du Bourg High School in St. Louis, Missouri. Sheesh...it had been so long since I had any contact with Du Bourg High School. I certainly couldn't just jet over there on my lunch hour and get a copy of my transcript.
I decided to double my odds of getting my transcript/copy of my diploma in time. I called Du Bourg and got instructions over the phone on how to apply for a copy of my high school transcript and then I set aside an entire Saturday to tear my house apart. Luckily after digging through stacks of boxes in closets, I found the high school diploma. The binding was a little cracked but the diploma was intact. Although my transcript from Du Bourg eventually arrived, it showed up a week after I actually had started school, so I was right to endure the grand digging time.
I also had to provide a copy of my birth cerficate, social security card and passport. Of course there were lots of forms to fill out including providing my license plate info so I could park in the student parking lot which is a separate lot set to one side of the building.
I managed to get all my paperwork finished and snag a meeting with the people at the school that went over my contract with me. There are many ways that students can finance their education ranging from loans to auto-pay from their bank accounts. Every prospective student is required to sign various papers which solidifies their commitment to the school.
I was very impressed with the efficiency and professionalism demonstrated as I walked through my enrollment process. I made an appointment for my meeting to finish my paperwork and I was greeted promptly. My paperwork was all organized in a folder with all the forms included for my easy review and signature.
I left the building both thrilled and nervous. I still had some doubts that I had lost my mind, but I was also excited at the prospect of this new journey. One of my biggest concerns was the fact that I had basically signed away all my Monday-Friday evenings for the next 18 months. I decided not to dwell on the long term and only focus on the present.My final act of enrolling was to go shopping because beginning cosmo students must wear all black except for accessories (belts, earrings, bracelets). How scary could school be anyway if it included shopping?
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