I'm taking a few classes this year at The Ohio State University (just so everyone knows, it is called 'The' Ohio State University). I'm trying to finish off my masters that I started last year. Lucky for me Nicole is working full-time and therefore I qualify for resident tuition rates.
Of course, as the astute will point out, qualifying for resident tuition is not the same thing as being charged resident tuition--which being not-so-astute is what I found out last week. I got a bit of a sticker shock when my tuition bill was a tidy $2,000 more than what I was planning. This was because I was still considered a non-resident and was being assessed a non-resident fee.
When I called the registrar I was told that checking the boxes was not enough and that I actually had to submit paper work to prove that Nicole was employed full-time and could be considered my sugar-mama. Without taking a breath, she went on to tell me that the deadline to submit the paperwork was the Friday before.
This was all quite a surprise. I registered for my classes after the residency deadline, and I didn't know I wasn't actually considered a resident until after I registered. So I decided that I was going to have to go down to campus and speak to someone in person.
So I spent the next two hours finding the necessary paper work and psyching myself up for battle with the registrars office. My plan was to go down the registrar, kick down the door, state my case, take a few hostages, and not leave until I had been given instate tuition and a helicopter.
On my way down to campus, I said a prayer asking that everything would work out. When I got to campus I told the secretary that I needed to submit my paperwork for residency and she proceeded to laugh at me and then say 'good luck'. It turned out that the residency specialist was on lunch and so another lady came out and said that she would take my paper work and give it to the specialist. I was hesitant because I had to find out that day if I could get residency because my tuition was due the day after. I explained my circumstances and she said that they were not taking any more applications, but that she would pass on the information and it was possible, but not likely, that the specialist would call me.
So I handed over my paperwork without much else to do. As I walked back to my car, I was disappointed in myself. That is definitely not how any of the character's Arnold Schwarzenager played would have handled the situation. Rambo would have shot them with an exploding arrow. Conan would have used his crazy sword. The Terminator would have blown the place up with a bazooka but all three would have gotten instate rates. I just walked out with a 'please call me'. Halfway to my car I decided that I should go back (this part was inspiration).
When I got back, the residency specialist was there. I was now in line behind 5 people. With each person I could see that my chances of a happy ending were rapidly disappearing. The specialist was quite ornery and was quite happy telling people the deadline was a week ago. I decided to wait it out though because I had faith something would happen and it would work out. The last people to go before me was a couple. He was a grad student and had filled out all of his paper work on time but there was an issue or two, so the specialist helped them. He was a full-time student and so their tuition bill include about $8000 in out of state fees. However, with the specialist, things got worked out. The wife at that point was so happy at having the money back that she asked if she could give the specialist a hug. The specialist's face lit up and the two hugged.
Then it was my turn. Now smiling, the specialist invited me back to her office. I explained my case. And she told me that she normally would tell me 'no' but since she was having a good day and I brought all of my paper work with me she would put it through. It was actually much easier than I thought it would be. I'm sure that there was some divine intervention when that girl hugged the specialist. Anyway, I'm glad for when prayers are answered in such simple ways; even if it means I didn't get a helicopter.