While reading about Ms. Lomb I learned about autodidacticism. Basically meaning self-directed learning, this concept appeals to me very much. I have never really liked the idea of traditional education; I simply do not see it as the most effective form of learning.
Back in ninth grade, after much back-and-forth between my parents and myself, I was allowed to stay home for a semester and study on my own. I don't feel that I've made the most of that period, but it has been an exhilarating experience in many ways.
I did not have any formal training in what I now do for a living—translation—until this year. And the advanced interpreting class that I took at the university this spring has only reinforced my conviction that self-directed reading and hands-on experience are much more effective in teaching me about my trade. Although maybe if this course was taught at MIIS and not at the local liberal arts college I wouldn't be saying this. :)
No wonder I've been going on and on about passion for learning. No wonder my learning efforts have been largely solitary. Perhaps readers of a more conventional bent will find my ideas useless. I won't be trying to convince anyone to take the autodidactic path, but my posts will likely be slanted toward this approach for it is central to my learning experience.