How should I go about returning to school after being laid off from work?

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Answered by: Alexa, An Expert in the Adult Education Category
Returning to school is a difficult and rewarding decision. If you can make a commitment to learn and acquire a degree, the experience will be rewarding. However, one must remember that returning to school is a decision that will pay off over time. If one views returning to school as an investment, one is more likely to succeed in finishing school and will always view a degree as an asset, even if one doesn't acquire a career in the field they studied.

In order to do well, one must keep in mind why returning to school is important to them. Perhaps they began their journey years ago, and quit in order to start working full-time. Perhaps one decided to raise a family, and now that the children are in school, one can make the decision to reprise this career. Perhaps the reason is as simple as one is returning to school for enrichment. No matter the reason, the decision is personal and significant to the individual.

Time management is key in succeeding at school. There are many courses to study for, and if one is returning to school while working, whether it is full or part-time, one must consider that one's time will be much more compromised because the time spent working is time that can be used for studying. Therefore, one must realize that returning to school will take up much of one's personal time. While this is difficult, especially while maintaining a full-time job, it requires discipline and determination.

One should strongly consider telling an employer that he or she is returning to school. This may have a very positive outcome, as an employer may admire and value one's determination in pursuing an academic education. An employer may consider a returning student an asset to one's company, as one will be thought of as a person who takes chances, is not afraid of a challenge, and may even devise better ideas for the company based on what he or she learns at school. In addition, the employer may be flexible with the amount of time allotted for work. He or she may allow the employee to study or even use the knowledge the employee gains on the job. He or she may even allow the employee to apply their newfound skills to the job.

One who is returning to school allows themselves to have a greater chance at a promotion. If there is no room for growth at one's current job, there is an opportunity to be qualified for a different job or career. Obtaining an education is always a "win-win" situation for the student! How do I know? I decided to complete my bachelor's degree after a 5-year absence from school. I not only had the opportunity to change careers, but allowed myself to be eligible for many more, as I didn't stop when I completed my Bachelor's degree. I also returned to school for my Master's degree, where I became more specialized in my area of study, making myself more appealing to employers. Returning to school was the best life decision I made, so don't be intimidated by the work. If returning to school is for you, you will succeed!

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