Post # 1
Hi all, right before my man proposed I got accepted into a masters of occupational therapy program which starts late August. I’m an older student (28) and will have my degree and license right before I turn 31. My Fiance has a decent career as a medical practictioner but has about $200k in loans to repay. Since our engagement he’s been taking charge in planning and really wants the wedding right before late August….in Hawaii. (It’s the only geographical choice that’s the midpoint between both families). My question is would it be better to have a two year engagement and wait till after my license? Has anyone been in a similar situation in planning a wedding WHILE in grad school? How did you do it? My dream was to have a wedding while I’m still in my 20’s, but I’m not sure how possible that is at the moment.
P.S. I know my profile says ‘Wedding: March 2019’ but I’ve had this account for a while and weddingbee wouldn’t let me create one without an approximate date and just threw one in there.
Post # 2
First of all, you won’t even be close to the oldest person in your program, and the average age of students in “professional” fields in grad school is well into the 30s, so you definately are not an “older” student.
I was trying to go back to school an do an accelorated BSN program (I’m well into my 30s and have a BS and MS in an unrelated field) and working, and school and wedding planning was too much. The plan was originally to work on all the science classes I needed to get accepted, get married after those classes were done, then start the BSN program directly after. Clearly, I’m a decent student as I already have a MS, and I worked 3 jobs while doing a 2 year program in 1 year…but wedding planning is STRESSFUL, even if you aren’t the one doing everything. I highly recommend either doing it before your program, or waiting until at least 6 months after. You’ll still have to deal with fittings and that kind of stuff even if your Fiance does all of the planning. I stressed myself out to the point where I ended up in the hospital, and missed a final. I know a lot of people do get married directly after they graduate, but we’re talking masters level professional degree path here. You’re going to have clinicls and classes (I’m assuming) and I dk if you’re going to work as well or not. But that just seems like a lot to me.
Post # 3
Personally I’d get married June – early August before you start grad school and have a wedding on the smaller side (you said your Fiance has student loans). I know many people have long engagements and that works for some people, but I would have zero interest in waiting that many years until grad school ends or with planning a wedding during grad school.
And I second the above comment. 28 is not an “older” student when you are in grad school.
Post # 4
I’m not sure about the planning aspect, but another factor in your decision should be whether or not your marital status affects any student loans or scholarships etc.
I know in some places you have access to more money in student loans if you’re married, but in others, your spouse’s income could put you in a different combined bracket and you may get less.
Of course that only matters if you’re using student loans.
Personally, I would probably get married before starting grad school rather than plan while doing school.
Post # 5
Ok, maybe my ‘older student’ opinion is a little warped because everyone I know had finished grad school before or at 25 and I just felt old by comparison and yes, I should stop thinking that.
All my prerequisites are completed and all I need to do now is to get CPR certified, send requested paperwork, get vaccinated, and figure out financial aid between now and late August which sounds like it leaves much more free time than taking on an 18 credit semester AND wedding planning.
Yes, after the rigorous academic year and half I’ll have about 6 months worth of clinicals. I know a ton of physical and occupational therapists and not a single one I know had a job of any sort during their time in their program. I considered occupational therapy assistant school at one point, and even they strongly recommend not working more than 10 hours per week. I don’t know how you were able to juggle all of that in the span of 1-2 years.
I tend to be a very patient person, but waiting that long is hard, considering the fact I’ve already been with him for 8.5-9 years. That would put us at 11 years or so before the wedding day.
And yes, we plan to invite 40, 50 people MAX.
Post # 6
We got married right before my husband started his PhD program. It was perfect really. I’m glad we don’t have to deal with any wedding crap on top of grad school stress. And if you’ve already been together a long time what’s the point in waiting any longer!
Post # 7
Excellent advice! I’ll have to contact the school as soon as we return from this trip. Depending on what they say, this could really change things.
May I ask how long it took to decide on the date and the duration of your engagement? And how big was your guest list?
Post # 8
Get married before! And enjoy every second!!!
Post # 9
Honestly, people who say wedding planning is stressful aren’t doing it right. I found nothing to be stressful. I made phone calls, visited venues, met photographers, etc. all on the weekends. If you do your research (aka read reviews), you’ll be able to make smart decisions of who to meet with, etc. Wedding planning is NOT that big of a deal – especially if you have 50 guests.
Now, I would strategically place the wedding around a break most likely – the week before you’ll have a bunch of stuff to do, im sure. I planned a wedding working full time and being in grad school part time and it wasn’t a big deal.
Post # 10
- Wedding: May 2017 - The Summit Country Day School Chapel/The Hilton Netherland Plaza Hall of Mirrors
I would aim for June-early August 2018.
I’m currently working on my Doctorate part-time while teaching K-8 full-time and getting married in May. Our wedding is the weekend after classes end for the summer.
We’ve been engaged since January and I’ve been using all of my school breaks to get as much planning done as I can.
FI’s Mom insisted we have a planner since I’m so busy and that has been so helpful.
Post # 11
I actually started grad school in the fall, and got married in October. We had set the date before I was 100% sure I was going to apply, so there was no delaying either by the time we decided when starting school would be best. I think it depends on how intense you want to be about your wedding. We got married in a different state about 10 hours away, with 100 people, and although it was stressful it definitely wasn’t quite as awful as I had imagined. But I also wasn’t very concerned about every little detail – I’ve never wanted a dream wedding or anything along those lines. I would maybe talk to other students in your program if you can and get an idea of how difficult and time consuming the first semester will be – and don’t try and overestimate your ability to juggle it all, you could really stress yourself out!
Post # 12
Unfortunately there’s no such thing as part time entry level OT school, nor is there such thing as a 100% online program. It’s so intense, I’m talking 12+ hours of studying every day, 7 days/wk on top of whatever classes I attend, according to other students I’ve spoken with. I really wish I could work during grad school (which would have helped finance a wedding better), but that’s not an option here. This is absolutely a full time program, no other way around it.
I never knew what I wanted in a dream wedding either, so I’m remaining really open to FI’s ideas. I’m all for a smaller wedding if that means I’ll have more time to dedicate to academics. I can handle a few imperfect things or mistakes here or there about the wedding. Grad school, not so much.
Post # 13
We picked our date officially 1 month after getting engaged but we were always planning to get married before grad school started. We had a 13 month engagement but I really feel like that was way too long and we could have planned it half the time. And while we invited 117, we only had 65 attend because it was an out of town wedding (think at least 8 hour drive) for 95% of our guest list.
Post # 14
All my wedding planning has taken place while I complete the last year of my PhD. Its not been a big deal. Its actually been nice to have something else to think about from time to time. I could have done all the planning earlier if it wasnt for the fact that there are some things that have to wait until closer to the day.
Post # 15
I wouldn’t mind a 13 month engagement! If done before the wedding, it would be about 8 months…which isn’t too bad, but no less than that! Since people would have to travel really far no matter where we have it, I’m expecting guests to decline as well.
May I ask what things had to wait til closer to the day?