Thursday, August 14

It was one hell of a emotional roller coaster ride today! Well, this week actually, but especially today. Ride #1: I checked my voice mail this morning and there was a message from a lady named Diane from our corporate accounts payable about my tuition expense report - the one for $1100 which I submitted last week. (I've been waiting for this expense report reimbursement so I can pay my boss back since he had to put my tuition and books on his personal credit card.) Diane asked where my grades were and that I had put the wrong dates on my expense report, or if the dates are correct, and I haven't even attended classes yet, I'd have to wait until the term is over then resubmit the expense report for reimbursement. So, in other words, I have to come up with the money first and then be reimbursed. Who the fuck has $1100 sitting around? I sure don't! So, here I am owing my boss $1100 that I do not have for tuition that the company is supposed to pay for. I wanted to break down and just cry. Tears broke through but I composed myself and told Tim what was happening. I didn't know what to do - I was thinking this is over, I'd have to drop out before I even started and take the loss of 10%, etc., but Tim said he had a meeting with our Div Mgr Mike and he'd see if there was anything they could do. In the meantime I took several deep breaths and cried on Colin and Emma's shoulders via e-mail (THANKS!!!!). Then a last minute meeting was called (see Ride #2) that I had to go to. After the meeting, I came back to my desk and called Diane. I explained the situation but she said there are absolutely no exceptions. You do not get reimbursed until the grades are in. Period. There was no policy that said anything about this in all the policies on our Intranet. The only thing it did say was "You must get a C or higher grade or you will have to pay the tuition back." What a crock of shit. Then Diane asked me "Why don't you just ask for a cash advance?" Cash advance???? I had no idea that we could do that and it sure as hell wasn't stated anywhere in the policies or tuition assistance stuff. So, I asked her what I needed to do and she directed me to the link in our intranet. I told Tim about it, got all the documentation together and filled out the forms. Mike has to approve it, but that shouldn't be a problem since it was all approved before... but there's still a slight chance the treasury dept (who gives out the advances) will deny it. I feel some relief, but I won't rest easy until I have that check in my hands and can pay Tim back. At the end of the term, I'll resubmit the exp. rep. with my grades and note that I got a cash advance already so it will "zero" it out. If the treasury dept doesn't approve it for some reason, I'm sure that Mike can ask his boss to get involved and get it approved. After all, I am definitely a hardship case! LOL!! Tim's meeting is on Monday, so he'll sign the forms then and see that they're sent off to the treasury. I called Natalie (Mike's assistant) at the off-base office to let her know what's going on, and she said "they don't do cash advances." Ohhhh yes they do and I have the policies to back it up. Natalie and I came to the conclusion that they most likely don't "like" to do them, but they DO do them. Tuition advance was specifically named and an entire section was dedicated to it. They don't advertise it and make it difficult to find, but its there. Ride #2: Our gov't organization that we're contracted to (Tim, Greg and I) has lost their sponsor for funding (this happend a few months ago) and we've been trying to find another sponsor for months. Nothing has panned out, so we had a meeting today and they told us that this funding will run out about Thanksgiving time. The first to go will be the contractors. We have customer funding that will cover consulting work, workshops, etc., but our information services and customer service areas will be cut unless we find a sponsor for them. Guess where the majority of my workload comes from? Yup, CS and IS. So... the main reason Tim is meeting with Mike about is "if the gov't doesn't find a sponsor, what happens to Karen, Tim and Greg?" Tim and Greg are consultants, but they don't work on customer funded projects 100% of the time either. So really, all of our jobs are in jeopardy. Our company does have other contracts on Hill AFB, as well as some work that could be done at our off-base offices. When I went to the company picnic a couple of weeks ago, I was talking to the financial guy, Bart from our main off-base office about the state of our gov't org and he said "we'll take care of you." I'm not sure exactly what that meant, I'm sure they'll do everything they can to place us, but I kind of had the feeling that Bart has talked to Mike about perhaps having me come and work him at that office. Just a weird feeling I had, not sure if it was my 6th sense or just a weird feeling. I've been concerned about this, obviously for months but I had a feeling that it would all work out fine and we'd find a sponsor... but after today's meeting I'm not so sure anymore. The gov't head honcho has one more advocate that may be able to sponsor us, so there's a glimmer of hope, but no one is really holding their breath. There's just so many budget cuts and programs that are being abolished. Its so scary to think of what is happening to our defense system. They need to put more money into it, not cut it. By this time, it was time for lunch and ooohhhhh did I need those cheese enchiladas! Big time. Sheri and I had a really good time, she's such good company and we both had a lot of things we needed to talk to someone about. So, good food, good company and we both felt so much better after lunch. I came back from lunch and had a card in my e-mail from Annie... Thanks, Annie! You sure know how to make me laugh! Ride #3 is on my Health Log if ya wanna read it. We just had a huge thunderstorm! The power was out for about 45 mins and it rained like crazy. It was so nice! I wish it would keep raining but its has stopped now. While the power was out, I took a nice cool shower and I'm feeling mucho better. I was all hot and sweaty because I cleaned the hell out of my bedroom after I got home from work. It needed it, and I needed the stress relief of cleaning it. Well... I am going to go really relax now and watch a fun movie to get my mind off things and destress. I'm soooo glad this week is over! This is my last weekend before school starts so I best make the most of it!