About The Website
The website exists to help you to succeed in your degree. As I have traveled I have met a number of people who put a great deal of time and money into a doctoral degree but they never finished. These were bright, effective and motivated people yet they failed. Many completed all of their classes but not the dissertation. We want you to succeed and to go all the way.
These people that dropped out talked about their pain, embarrassment and anger from not graduating. Much of the anger had to do with the large sums of money borrowed to pay for tuition; this is debt that still has to be paid back. I have heard that education debt can no longer be removed in bankruptcy.
At first each person tried to make it sound like the failure was no big deal. But you do not have to be a therapist to feel the emotion pouring out of them. This was a big failure from a group of people selected by the university because they were smart, motivated and champions in their areas of expertise. This group did not have a history of losing so why did they fail in this case?
The pattern that emerged from the discussions was that each person was alone in the process. Even a good doctoral committee professor reportedly spent limited time with the students. The doctoral student is expected to be the smartest person in the room but this was a new process for them. Without guidance the students were pulled away from the discipline that served them so well in other areas of education up to this point.
This website is only one of the tools available to you and it does not have all or even most of the answers. It will allow you to connect with other students and to blow off some steam (as long as you do not identify the institution or professor who you are having problems with). You can be bluntly honest but no one wants to hear you attack a specific person or place. After all you may be the real problem. It will help to share with others and to get some advice and even to hear others support you.
There is some very good advice out there and you will get that from others. The website has some start up advice and the e book has a little more detail. No suggestions will work with everyone. So pick and choose suggestions based on your specific situation. In an anonymous manner you can share ideas and get some support. Find out what tripped up students who came before you. Listen to what worked or did not work for others then decide and adapt what is suggested. Using the web site is like having a map in an unfamiliar wilderness. The folks who failed were just as smart as you are and they failed.
About The Author
Dr Randy Parker has attained a doctorate, two master’s degrees and thirty hours of post master's clinical classes. He has completed classes in economics, business law, accounting and general business. He is a Board Certified Clinical Psychotherapist with licenses in psychology, social work and one in long term care administration.
He has worked as a Master’s Licensed Psychologist, Manager, Clinical Director, Clinical Supervisor, and Departmental Analyst. He teaches graduate and undergraduate students. Earlier in his career he was the Associate Director of a medical rehabilitation center. He has been a licensed insurance agent and a Financial Planner/ Stock Broker (Registered) and a Program Director at a state facility for people with developmental disabilities.
Very early in his career, he and his wife lived 24/7 in a group home with a number of behaviorally challenged youth offenders. He was also paid as a consultant and a trainer at this internationally known treatment site. The author was also a certified trainer in physical management techniques for assaultive clients for about 10 years.
The author has been married to the same beautiful (and patient) woman for 35 years. He has two children, two horses, a bunch of dogs and animal rescue cats.
Despite all of the accomplishments above, earning the doctoral degree was one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life. It nearly shattered my marriage and was comparable to a near fatal medical condition I suffered for over a year. Completing a doctoral degree is a hard road. The website and book are my attempts to help you. You are going into hell and most of you are too sure of yourselves to even realize the dangers ahead.
It took me several years longer to graduate because my first committee chair had repeated medical problems and I did not seek another committee chair. I wasted two years and everything I had written was tossed out by the next committee.
Just talking about the doctoral process makes me tense. About a year before I graduated I lost hope one night and my wife caught me trying to burn all of my computer disks, hard copies of the government database and notes. In my mind it seemed clear “burn it all and then just walk away.” I would wake up free the next morning. I had been working on the degree program for 8 years and I had given it all that I had. I simply wanted to be free of the life sucking non ending degree (LSNED). I was not thinking logically, I was just so tired. My wife (who hated the degree process with all her heart) took the materials and locked them up. I came very close to not finishing. I had reached the end of my resources and my hope.
The next day I physically shook thinking how close I had come to ending my dream and wasting all the money I had spent on tuition etc. My solution was to turn my eyes heavenward and ask God to throw me over his shoulder and carry me the last ten yards across the goal line. I swore to him I would then try to help others to make it through this hellish life sucking process (HLSP). The last year flew by and things went much better as these techniques came to me or I heard about ideas from successful students who had graduated earlier from various colleges. I began to run into them where ever I went. The website idea was born and then the e-book, since most folks will not read an entire website. I wanted something a student could print off, carry and read when they ran into a new problem.
Talk to each other on the website and also send us your ideas! Do not disparage any institution or school employee since in today’s digital world that may come back to haunt you. I wish you the best. I hope what we have will help you. Look for other sites and people who can help you too.
Your author welcomes you,
Dr. Randy Parker
Copyright © 2013 Dr Randy Parker. All rights reserved.