Today was my first day of classes at CMU. My first day as a graduate student.

Weird. Strange. Surreal.

But cool. I?「どィび「m really excited and happy to be back in school. It?「どィび「s hard to believe I completed my undergraduate degree (in poetry!) 10 years ago. I definitely do not yet see myself as a student.

The actual interaction design program doesn?「どィび「t start until the fall. But for the next six weeks I’ll be taking design fundamentals every morning Monday through Friday. And for the next four weeks, there will also be a software boot camp in the afternoon for InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, Flash, and After Effects.

Today was a lot like kindergarten, because we got to play with a big pile of random objects. Though a higher purpose was being served. We were asked to categorize the objects so that someone walking in off the street could make sense of them. We were told this is what designers do.

There was also some higher-level talk about the phases of development and the off comment about space communicating meaning and form communicating meaning, blah, blah, blah. But I won?「どィび「t bore you with that stuff, since it?「どィび「s already been covered.

Fourteen of us showed up today. (Although the instructor thought there should have been 18.) I met at least half of my peers, and even mostly remember their names and previous locations.

We have tomorrow off, it being Independence Day and all. But I?「どィび「m looking forward to the next class on Wednesday. Sure beats working. Except, of course, the money.

Looks like this summer course and fall tuition, minus a $4,000 scholarship, will run about $14K. Still haven?「どィび「t received word about financial aid. But I?「どィび「m keeping my fingers crossed and hoping it will all work out, with, ideally, money left over for beer.