When many people consider returning to school, they often reflect on what their high school experience was like. They have unpleasant memories of hard wooden desks and strict teachers. Today’s adult education system is much more improved. Going back to school is now becoming a very popular choice for adults. There are many reasons why older people are continuing their education. Some of these reasons include:
- Increase their chances of getting a promotion or pay raise
- Improving their chances of acquiring a better job
- Inspire their children to continue their education
- Personal achievement and an interest in continuing their education
- Acquiring new skills needed for a current job
According to the US Department of Labor, “for adults who do go back to school, over 80 percent graduate with a degree compared to less than 50 percent of those who attend college right after high school.” Completing a college education program or upgrading your education is very important because most employers look to fill their positions with qualified and educated workers. Because technology is always changing, advancing your education will help you get that desired job interview and maybe even advance your career. Obtaining the most current degree or certificate is essential for anyone seeking employment in a specialized field.
Common types of educational programs people enroll in include:
1. GED: equivalent of a high school diploma
2. Professional certification/Recertification
3. On-the-job training
4. Bachelors or graduate degrees such as a master’s or doctorate
5. English as a second language
There are number of benefits for adults who continue their education. They include:
Improved Learning: Because adults will have both work and life experience, they can apply these experiences in the classroom. Learning is usually much easier and quicker. Many adults find that they understand information better than when they were a youth.
Adult Education for All Ages: Adults will often find themselves seated next to people in their 60s, 70s, and 80s. You will feel comfortable knowing that everybody is there to learn
Educational Costs: The cost of attending an adult education program will be well worth it if you obtain a better job with a better salary. Some employers will pay for education if it relates to the job. There are also a number of financial aid packages available.
Flexibility: There are many programs that will fit your busy lifestyle. Whether you work all day or spend your time caring for your children, there are programs and courses available online or at night. Online programs often allow you to learn at your own pace.
Program Content: Adult education programs offer the most up-to-date information and the latest technology. Adults have a different approach to learning than young people. Adult learning programs are focused on their own personal needs and they have the freedom to learn their own way.
If you are one of many people who are considering returning to school, you should not let fear and insecurity stop you. There are many people in your situation who are looking to improve their life. If you did not complete your degree, this may be the perfect time to finish it. It is important to know that it is never too late to return to college and receive your diploma. Continuous life learning has many advantages, from obtaining your dream job to achieving a sense of accomplishment. Education has no age limits and will help you open the door to a more satisfying career or pay raise no matter how long you have been out of school. It is never too late for anyone to go back to school.