6 Signs That It Could Be Time to Go Back to School
It's common around the beginning of the year to focus on self improvement.
We make New Year's Resolutions and look forward to a bright future in 2013. We take a bigger-picture view of our lives and identify areas for improvement. We set goals.
For some people, self improvement in 2013 will involve going back to school to pursue a college degree. How do you know if it's the right time for such a move? See if any of these six signs sound familiar:
1. You're looking to switch careers.
I came across a 2012 survey conducted by Right Management that brought into focus Americans' dissatisfaction with their jobs. It's an eye-opening study in which two-thirds of respondents said they were dissatisfied at work. If you'd rather work in another industry and are serious about making it happen, it may be time to go back to school.
2. You have a specific plan of action and purpose.
Before seriously considering school again, make sure you have a specific plan and purpose. What area of study would best suit your skill-set and career path? More importantly, what is your goal in earning a college degree? Of course, going back to school is a major life decision. The benefits of earning a degree are plentiful. Numerous statistics back up this assertion. Just make sure you have a plan of action and a purpose behind the decision.
3. You want a pay increase.
If you're looking for more money, a college education could be the solution. According to a report by the U.S. Census Bureau, adults with a bachelor's degree earn an average of $2.1 million over the course of their working life. That figure drops to $1.2 million for those with a high school diploma. The earnings rise even more for those with a master's degree. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the 2010 average annual income for those with a master's degree was $12,000 more per year than someone with a bachelor's.
4. You were passed up for a promotion.
Reasons for being passed up for a promotion vary, but education level could play a role. Those with an associate degree could think about pursuing a bachelor's; ditto for those with a bachelor's degree considering a master's. A degree does not guarantee promotion, but it puts you in a better position to advance within the organization.
5. It's tough to find interviews.
In today's competitive job market, possessing a college degree is becoming more and more important. If it's been difficult to set up interviews for awhile (say, 4-5 months or longer), it could be a sign that something is missing from your qualifications or experience. That missing component could be your education level, depending on the job you're seeking.
6. You're up for a new challenge.
Going back to school, whether it's online or a brick-and-mortar institution, takes a serious amount of dedication, patience and persistence. It's a new challenge. Effectively balancing your time and planning ahead play a major role in academic success. If you motivate yourself and are up for the challenge, you will make the most of your opportunity in college.
Do some of these signs sound familiar? Are you thinking about furthering your education? To see whether online learning is the right fit for you, download our free eBook by clicking the image below:
About the author: Eric Sorrentino joined Grantham University as Social Media Manager in October 2011. Prior to that, he blogged about Big 12 Conference athletics for KUsports.com and was a sports copy editor for the Lawrence Journal-World. Eric received his bachelor's degree in Journalism from the University of Kansas.