Kris Hine is currently enrolled in the Bachelor of Psychology program with a minor in sociology after being out of school for ten years. He is living in Alberta and in his spare time he enjoys playing with his dogs and cat, mediating, yoga, and cooking. This is his story.
Can you give us a little bit of background information about yourself? Who are you? Where do you live, where do you come from?
My name is Kris Hine. I currently live on a little acreage approximately 20 kilometres from Vermilion, Alberta. I was born in Regina, Saskatchewan. I am enrolled in Bachelor of Psychology, minoring in Sociology after over 10 years of being out of school.
Describe the path that led you to AU. What was it that made you realize you wanted to go back to school, and what pushed you into the program you’ve signed up for?
I have always been passionate about psychology ever since I was young. Prior to enrolling in school, I worked as a Senior Judicial Clerk at the Provincial Court of Alberta for 7 years. My role as a Judicial Clerk made me realize how much more I wanted to help people.
What do you do like to do when you’re not studying?
When I am not studying (lately it is all I have been doing due to my incredible procrastination skills!) I meditate and do yoga. It helps keep me balanced. I enjoy playing with our dogs and antagonizing our cat. During the summer, I can be found outside puttering around the yard, in the garden or mowing the grass. I also enjoy cooking.
What are your plans for this education once you finish? How does it fit in with where you want to go?
My goal is to complete my Masters of Counselling or Psychology. If I am still ambitious, I will go for my Doctorate in Psychology. However, I have only completed a couple of courses in my Bachelor of Psychology program, so I still have a long way to go. When I complete my education, I want to be a Psychologist in either Clinical Child Psychology or Forensic Child Psychology. That avenue may change as I get more involved in my degree.
Who in your life had the greatest influence on your desire to learn?
Ever since I was young, I have always been inquisitive and asked, likely, far more questions that anyone should ever have to answer. My greatest influence in my life has to be my partner. She always wants the best for me, and pushes and supports me to get there. She always knew my passion for psychology and constantly encourages me to be better for myself in order to be better others. I would not be half the person I am today if it wasn’t for her. My family and friends are also huge supporters of me. I am grateful to be surrounded by such wonderful people.
Describe your experience with online learning so far. What do you like? Dislike?
Online learning has been an adventure so far. I have learnt how to manage my time in a more effective manner (although sometimes that is debatable!). I enjoy being able to learn when it fits into my schedule instead of having to work my life around studying. I thoroughly enjoy that my text book reads to me (I call her Barb). She never pronounces things properly but, my e-text makes it great for me to learn whilst I travel. To be honest, I am still fresh to this online learning, so I have not developed any dislikes for it yet.
At what point did you waver the most about continuing your schooling? What caused it and what got you through it?
When I first started my courses, I wavered a lot about continuing school. It was difficult for me to adapt to being a student from being a workaholic. Not working much made me feel a bit like a bum. I received a lot of reassurance from my partner that I am not actually a bum and school must be my primary focus in order to achieve the goals I have set out for myself.
What’s your most memorable AU course so far, and why?
As I have only been in a few courses, my most memorable course has to be Math 215, statistics. I know that may make a lot of peoples toes curl! It would have made mine curl in the beginning as well. It has been my most memorable because I always thought of myself to be weak in math. As it turned out, I exceled immeasurably throughout this course, and I learnt a lot about myself.
What have you given up to go to AU that you regret the most? Was it worth it?
To be honest, I don’t feel that I have any regrets. I have grown and learnt so much from every new chapter of my life.
How do you find communications with your course tutors?
I have primarily contacted my tutors through email, and they have all been great. They get back to me usually within the day. Despite some of my silly, ridiculous questions I have had, they have never made me feel stupid for asking them.
What’s your pet peeve if you have one?
I have a few pet peeves. I strongly dislike people chewing their food obnoxiously (close your mouth!). That will make me leave a room if I am around those kinds of people. I, borderline, hate disrespectful people. Whether it is people disrespectful to others or themselves, it grinds my gears something terrible. I am not afraid to call people out for being disrespectful, although it has created some tension for me in the past.
What famous person, past or present, would you like to have lunch with, and why?
I think that it would be pretty cool to have lunch with Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr.), borrow his suit and attempt to fly around in it.
Describe the proudest moment in your life.
My proudest moment would be teaching my autistic brother to drive, when nobody thought he would ever be able to.
Describe one thing that distinguishes you from most other people.
I have an incredible amount of patience and I have this crazy ability to read people really well.
What is the most valuable lesson you have learned in life?
Be kind. Be genuine. Be honest. Learn your limits on how far to help people, because some people take you for granted. Fly by the seat of your pants and enjoy the view. Appreciate each day, because for some, those days are cut really short. But above all else, take care of yourself, mind, body, and heart, before trying to help others because you can’t be of any help whilst in shambles. I realize that is more than one lesson, life has taught me a lot of important lessons so far.
Have you travelled? Where has life taken you so far?
When I was 19, I booked a flight to England, packed my bags, and away I went. I ended up living there for 3 years. While I lived there, I traveled all throughout England, Scotland, Wales. I have also trekked through parts of Europe. Italy, Spain, Germany, France, Belgium to name a few. As for the USA, I have only stepped foot in Montana, Washington, and North Dakota. I have also been to British Columbia, all around Saskatchewan and Alberta, Manitoba, and Ontario.
Why did you end up going to England? Did you enjoy your time there?
I was unsure what I wanted out of life. So I went to England for an adventure. I always wanted to go to Europe so I started with a country that spoke English like I did. I ended up managing a pub during the time that I was over there which was really fun, one of the best jobs I had. I learnt a lot about food and different wines, spirits, and beers. It was an incredible experience and my second home. The friends I met are from all over the world, ranging from Brazil to South Africa to Sweden to Australia. I would go absolutely do it all over again. I think everyone should travel outside their country and experience life somewhere else. It changes a person and their perspectives on life.
What (non-AU) book are you reading now?
Unfortunately, I am currently not reading anything right now. In fact, my book shelf is growing with the list of books I need to read.
What books are you looking forward to read?
The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson, The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein, The Trial by Franz Kafka, and House Rules by Jodi Picoult. That’s just to name a few. My list keeps growing each time I walk into a bookstore and buy three or four more books.