I earned my Bachelor Degree in Computer Science 5 years ago. From the moment when I have a diploma in my hands, I thought, enough I never return to academia, no matter what happens. I was very keen to start working.

By the moment I changed few workplaces. I wanted to try all kind of positions that computer science man can get. All my positions were not very interesting. I wouldn't say I became very experienced programmer, I have some experience, but I don't have a field I am good at, and actually I am not too worried about that. The main problem I think is I don't feel that I do something useful or something challenging, actually, I feel that I waste my time. I do my job, but I don't feel I contribute to myself.

Few years ago I realized that may be it's worth returning to academy. Simply, just because I remember it wasn't boring. I sent few application letters to few good universities in my country, but they didn't apply me. There were universities that just refused without any explanation, and in few of them I fault in interview.

In this situation, I decide if no official program is allowed, I can just take few courses of Master Degree in any university. The result of my first course was very terrible, I think I was the worsen student on the course. But afterward there was a gradually improvement in the grades (I never took the same course twice). This year again I sent few application letters with my grades, and I was applied by all universities.

The problem is by now I have a very good position in very successful start-up company. The position is very hard and almost all the time in the office I am under a high pressure, but of course, there are benefits of a successful start-up company, fast promotion, investment, but still I have a feeling that I am doing something wrong.

I don't have a decision yet, either postpone my studies or give up good position. Have you found yourself in a similar situation, when you have give up a lot, just because you want to do something you was dreaming about? Particularly, have you gave up you job for studies, and do you regret about your decision?

tl;dnr: A few years ago, I didn't like my computer programming job. I was good enough at it, but the job wasn't very challenging and didn't offer much room for personal growth. I felt like I was wasting my time. Even though I had sworn that I never would, I applied to grad school. I was not accepted as a full-time student, so I just started taking classes as a non-degree student. Initially I did badly, but over a few years I improved. Recently, I was admitted to grad school. But by now I have a great job in a fast-paced startup. So I'm torn about whether to quit my job to return to school. What do you suggest?

  • Do you like your current job? Quitting seems like a bet.
    – Joost
    Aug 18 '12 at 18:39

An important consideration is "window of opportunity". How long will you have the chance to go back to school? Will the school be happy to let you defer for a year? In contrast, if you leave your current job for school, is there a good chance that you could return to work there after you finish a masters degree?

Also ask "What are my long-term goals?" It sounds like you mainly want to be challenged and experience personal growth; perhaps also to "do something useful". Do you have others long-term goals? How likely are you to be happy and on your way to these goals in 5 or 10 years if you stay at your current job. Grad school can be fun, but it's often just a way to delay "real life" for a few years. If you get a masters, will that really help you to be happier with your life and where you're headed 5 or 10 years after you finish school?

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