Having children doesn’t make going back to school easier, that’s for sure. If there’s one thing most parents aren’t thinking as they lay down at night, it’s “Yeah, I for sure have time for homework right now.”
But while nothing can completely eliminate the struggles of continuing your education as a parent, it is fair to say that the experience is more accessible now than ever before. Digital communication has made remote learning easier than ever, and there are many funding opportunities for parents that make college more affordable.
In this article, we take a look at why now is the perfect time for parents to go back to school.
Is Getting a Degree Worth It?
The practicality of getting a college education has been called into question recently. It’s not uncommon to hear news pundits kick the question around. Can university life in its current form exist? The average college student borrows around $40K, though the number can be much higher for people attending pricier colleges.
Short of buying a house, that’s probably the biggest loan you will ever take. How can you justify it as a parent trying to raise a family?
There are a few things to keep in mind:
- You can go at your own pace: If you don’t want to borrow money and deal with interest payments, you can take classes at your own pace and pay for them a few at a time. Getting your degree this way will take longer, but it can save you a lot of money in the long run. Plus, a slower pace may be just what the doctor ordered for someone who is also trying to take care of their family.
- There are grants available: Grants provide you with free money to pursue your education. They are usually a little competitive to get, but if you do your research, you’ll find that there are many opportunities. Some grants are exclusive to minority groups. Others go to veterans, first-generation college students, finance majors, etc. Chances are, you fit the bill for some kind of specialized grant. These are particularly good ways to pay for your education as they are less competitive and can often be renewed each year.
- Employers often help: If you are currently working, talk to your employer about what sort of college support they provide. Many will pay some or even all of your college tuition.
And, of course, it is ok to take out student loans if you have to. Most financial professors recommend borrowing no more than one year’s salary to get your education.
Online School Makes it Easier
When online college first hit the scene, it was viewed as a punchline. A second-tier alternative to in-person learning. Obviously, attitudes have changed considerably. For years, most mainstream universities have been building up their virtual infrastructure.
Online-only colleges are now more credible than ever, and thanks to Covid, almost everyone in the world had the opportunity to experience firsthand how effective remote collaboration can be.
Taking classes online is not only a completely legitimate way to get your degree, but it is particularly favorable for busy parents. Here are a few of the many benefits:
- Online college courses tend to be flexible: Of course, every class will be different. However, many online classes feature a flexible workload that allows students to work at their own pace. Often, the instructor will present you with a weekly workload, and allow you to complete the work when it suits you.
- No commute: Did you know that the average commute is thirty minutes? That’s an hour each day, every day, for two to three years. Online school can take place at your kitchen table. For most parents, an extra hour in the day is an enormous boon regardless of the context.
- Remote communication tools are better than ever: Because remote communication has become so efficient, online school is easier than ever before. There are software modules that make it easy for students to interact with one another in ways similar to how they would in person. This makes it easier to work together, or even network.
Thanks to developments in the world of online school, it is now easier than ever to get a high-quality education in a way that is comfortable for you.
The Benefits of Having Multiple Degrees
Getting a graduate or second degree can feel like a daunting, even unnecessary proposition. You already went to school, just like everyone told you to do. Why go back?
People with graduate degrees are in particularly high demand right now. Almost ninety percent of companies report deliberating about seeking out people with Master’s degrees.
The road is hard, but the opportunities on the other side of it more than justify the effort. So, in order to remain competitive in the job market and acquire additional degrees, people nowadays are ready to go through any steps to achieve their goals. In instance, some of them can be interested in how to fake an associate’s degree, while others consider all the risks and prioritize the knowledge and skills that can be gained by online degrees.
The Time to Act is Now
Most experts agree that now is a great time to get an advanced degree. The vast majority of businesses (almost 96%) are planning on expanding their personnel over the next few years, but there is a particularly high demand for the college-educated.
Whether you be going to school for the first time, or going back for a higher degree, you can trust that there will be a slate of opportunities waiting for you on the other side of your studies. College-educated professionals make significantly more than the rest of the population and experience a heightened degree of career mobility.
If you are interested in expanding your options while increasing your salary, now is the perfect time to start thinking about getting a degree.