As all you loyal readers know, I lost my job at Kaplan on Nov 30th. It actually has ended up being a blessing, and everything has oddly worked out well (knock on wood, fingers crossed, salt over shoulder). Now that my severance check has been cashed, I can officially put my Kaplan days behind me. Which, of course, involves a look back at what I learned from my three years as registrar.
1. I can do anything. When I started at Kaplan, I was a casino lifer who knew promotions, events and sales (kinda). I got hired as the registrar for KU, and I really didn't even know what that meant. I walked into a disaster that was disorganized to levels I had never seen. Every single day when I left, I didn't think the next day could be worse. The only reason I stayed was because Nick was there. But slowly, I restructured everything and took over the school. Somehow, I got everyone to believe I knew what I was doing, and soon we were a well oiled machine.
2. You don't have to be a good person, a good worker or a good manager to get promoted. At Kaplan, I met some of the worst people I hope to ever meet in my life. No joke. And that is saying a lot, considering some of the people I knew at the casinos. These people are liars, manipulators and just plain bad people. But somehow they got promoted and I got laid off. It goes to show that you don't have to be smart or hardworking to succeed in some companies. You just have to be willing to drink the kool-aid and lie with the big shots.
3. Some people will beat the odds to come out on top. During my three year stint, I worked with a lot of students. Some of them shocked the hell out of me. They dealt with abusive relationships, vehicle issues, money problems, health issues...and they managed to do well in school and graduate. My favorite day every ten weeks was switching people to graduates, especially when they were the people I didn't think would make it.
4. Some people have an excuse for every single aspect of their lives. However, for every person who surprised me, there were ten who made me puke with their stupid excuses for why they couldn't do it, or why it was Kaplan's (or my) fault as to why they were failing. I saw several students make it to their last term and then fail out. Why? My theory is that if they actually graduated, they would have no excuse to be a huge loser anymore. So instead, they would fail out so they could continue their pathetic lives.
5. I have it really good. I went straight to college after high school, graduated in four years and have been employed ever since. I have my masters degree. I have several connections, I can present myself and interview well. I have plenty of clothes to wear for every occasion, and I have a car that runs and is reliable. I have it made. Many, many students I saw at Kaplan aren't that lucky.
6. My family and friends are amazing. Not only am I luckier than many of our students when it comes to a support system, but I needed my friends to vent to when Kaplan got to be too much for me. Luckily, not only did I have great people in my real life, but I had a few great friends within the walls of KUCB.
7. Some people have no work ethics whatsoever. I have never experienced anything like what I saw at KUCB when it comes to lazy employees, starting all the way at the top. I have never seen so much grab ass, wasted times, extended lunch breaks, abuse of coming late/leaving early...it was pathetic. People would sit in each others office for HOURS with the door closed, mostly talking shit about anyone outside the door. Facebook and Pinterest were up more than the student data system. It makes working in an actual office where people just work a real culture shock.
8. I love community service. During my last year at KU, I was tasked with getting the campus more involved with the community. I got us involved with Keep Council Bluffs Beautiful, Relay for Life, The Micah House, Teammates and Habitat for Humanity. I absolutely loved this, and I plan to stay involved. I am thankful for this, if nothing else, from my Kaplan days.
9. Getting involved in the drama is not worth it and it can make you cray cray. It was far too easy to get all wrapped up (and so angry) with the Kaplan bullshit. Especially when it centered around everyone's hatred for one single person. I am completely guilty of getting into it, but I am going to work hard to never get that into it again.
10. Planking is hilarious, I don't care who are you. And I will go to my grave saying that my boss's complete overreaction to this was by far the most ridiculous thing I dealt with at that place.