Returning to College and Your Unfinished Degree

Often, it seems like people today have so many demands on their time and things to do, it’s a wonder it all gets accomplished. Unfortunately, it sometimes happens that in the midst of a hectic, chaotic life, some things have to be pushed to the back burner; too frequently, it is education that gets tabled to make way for work and raising a family. Too often, college students abandon their degrees for any number of reasons: the work is too demanding or unappealing, the student needs to devote more time to working or other personal commitments, the finances to support tuition run dry. Whatever the reason, going back to school after any length of time to complete an unfinished degree is always a good investment that is guaranteed to pay off in the future with dedication and hard work.

Why You Should Finish Your Degree

These days, it is frequently said that the bachelor’s degree is the new high school diploma, and the master’s degree is the new bachelor’s. This expression refers to the devaluing of the bachelor’s degree, due in large part to the fact that more students go directly to college post-high school than ever before, and still more continue their educations on the post-graduate level. Bachelor’s degrees are required for many, if not most, entry-level jobs; in some cases even a master’s is required. Without a college degree, it can be exceedingly difficult to find a well-paying, satisfying job. Even more difficult still will be moving up the corporate ladder, earning promotions and pay raises. Having a college degree demonstrates your commitment and work ethic, thus opening you up to opportunities for yourself, as well as your family, in the forms of employment opportunities, earning potential, and chances to advance in the workplace to rewarding and fulfilling work.

Getting Re-Started in College

Before committing to returning to school and your degree, take some time to be sure this time around will lead to the success you deserve. If you can foresee circumstances like the ones that led you away from college the first time, create a plan for how to manage them this time, or perhaps wait a few more months to return. Consult with your employer and co-workers to be sure your schedule will allow for night or online classes; you may also find that your company supports employees in the form of financial aid or tuition reimbursement. On that note, examine your financial situation carefully as well and research your options for financial aid. If you have children and/or a spouse, consult them as well, as your return to school will undoubtedly affect the routine in your day at home.

When you’re sure now is the time to return to school, choosing a college is the next order of business. Make an appointment to speak with administrators from the college in which you started your degree; you will need to find out how to transfer your transcripts, or perhaps you’d like to return to school where you started. If you want to explore new colleges and universities, learn about schools within commuting distance to your home and/or work. Online college is also an excellent option for busy adults; be sure to choose an accredited program that offers your major. There are plenty of resources available to ease you back into studenthood; don’t let uncertainty or confusion deter you from making the great decision to invest in yourself with a college education.


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