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Completing a PhD program is hard enough by itself. Add in the responsibilities of balancing a job and raising a 2-year-old son, and finishing the program might seem implausible. But not for recent PhD graduate Dzifa Dordunoo, PhD, RN, who found a way to make it all work. While in school, Dordunoo’s day usually began around 5 a.m., regardless of whether she was up past midnight the previous night completing school work. In the mornings, she’d have a little bit of time to get herself together before waking up her son to get him ready so she could drop him off at daycare by 8. After dropping him off, she’d head to work at the School of Nursing, where she is a clinical instructor. Upon arrival, Dordunoo spends her work day coordinating lab content and teaching classes.
While she was working on her PhD, Dordunoo would shift her focus to her dissertation, which required analyzing data and constant writing and revisions, after completing her work duties. She’d return home around 7 p.m., but then had to get her son settled for the night before she could resume working on her dissertation. On average, Dordunoo spent eight to 10 hours each day working on her dissertation. Although the combination of writing a dissertation, taking care of a young child, and working was a grueling process, the excitement of learning something new, resolving data analysis issues, or simply completing her goals kept her going.