How many times have I said I will start Christmas shopping in July?
The last-minute shopping panic is over, I’m so glad life can return to normal even though time is limited due to school work. I have one year and six months left to finish school, or three plus if I continue on to a Master’s Degree. For the past six months, I have been sticking my nose in a textbook every night, pushing myself to learn topics that I don’t really enjoy. Math was never my favorite subject, that means Finance, Accounting, and anything that requires equations including economics must be learned by use of strict discipline. Those A’s and B’s I have gotten in any of those classes were more than earned. I worked hard, very hard, for those grades.
Maybe the worst classes are almost over for the time being. – sigh –
What’s in store for 2017 Classes?
Microsoft Office 2013 – I am really looking forward to the next term, almost to the point of excitement. For the past six years, I’ve been playing with Office on my own, stumbling around the software while learning how to format eBooks and print books for publishing. Imagine what I could do if I learned to master the software?
My other class for the next term is Science I. I liked science in high school. Physics and Biology were my strengths. Chemistry falls into the same category as math, with massive distaste. Give me finance over chemistry any day.
Term 4 will give me a second round in Science II. Microeconomics is my other course. Hopefully, I will enjoy the business element of economics over the world element.
Summer I will prove to be interesting with America’s Themes and Dreams and Marketing. Maybe by the time I get to the Marketing class, I will be ready to release a new book. I have several works in progress at this stage.
So far, 2017 is looking to be an exciting year.
Summer 2 may start to shape and change my future career with Human Resource Management and Sociology. With one term left to complete to fulfill what is needed to complete an Associate Degree in Business. The rest of the year will build on my Bachelor’s Degree.
All these classes and working full time does not leave me much time for writing nor doing the things that I love doing. At the same time, I am following the dream of acquiring a degree which I have wanted to do for the past thirty years. I can only imagine where I would be today if I had started on my career earlier in life.
If it hadn’t been for Mike making that call to my high school that day to inquire about getting my transcript, I might have continued to put my education off.
I expect to have a Bachelor’s Degree by the time I am 55 years old. (Probably before that age).
2016 was an eventful year. It is true, when a door closes, a window of opportunity opens. You just need to learn to find those windows in the places you least expect to find them located.
I like them!
You do have to be self-sufficient when it comes to learning. Discipline is a must. The deadlines must be met. You are given the essential tools for survival. That would be the textbooks.
One doesn’t need to be at a complete loss. Make sure you know how to use the internet to research what you need to know, and read the textbook.
I know, you don’t like to read the book. Well, read it anyways. You won’t be sitting in class listening to your professor go on and on with a lecture. Your lecture, if you are lucky will be a PowerPoint of about ten slides. That’s it.
You will have to go online and research if you need to know more to understand your assignments or discussions.
The tests are open book. They are still hard regardless.
I also like the time I’ve saved in not having to travel across the state to sit in a classroom. It would be an hour drive one way for me. That would be two hours spent on the road when I could be reading that textbook instead.
What I don’t like…
There isn’t much I don’t like about the type of course study. I have the discipline for doing what I need to do when I need to do it. Especially, when I set my mind to doing something that I want to do passionately.
I did teach myself to self-publish, didn’t I?
When I’m done with school, there will be loads of stories to come. Which leads me to the other thing I don’t like. That would be not having enough time to write stories. I have all these new ideas popping into my head that I keep jotting down in a journal I keep at my desk. I read something in one of my textbooks, and a light comes on, jot that one down.
Seriously, if you want to return to school, then do it!
Online courses need discipline and self-sufficiency.
There are hybrid courses too. You do some of the work online and the rest in the classroom.
Or, there is old school, 100% classroom.
It’s your choice. I know I’m glad to have jumped at the opportunity when I did.
Are you thinking of going back to school?
For years I kept thinking about my missed opportunity to go to college after graduation. My friends went, their friends went, and all found professional careers.
But I never went. Instead, I settled for being a low skilled worker. I never viewed myself as a low-skilled worker until recently. All those different jobs I did over the years never added much to my skill sets. They were fundamental skills that could be applied to most anything, except to a profession.
I was happy with my basic skill set. What mattered to me was making a living. When I say making a living, I’m talking about a surviving living when one can afford to live off of the weekly pay they make. There was a time when companies would make certain that their workers could afford to live in their communities by keeping up with the cost of living increases. This isn’t happening so much anymore.
More and more businesses are balking at giving employees cost of living raises or any raises for that matter. It takes money away from their bottom line. If they dish out raises than they won’t be able to keep people on for resources.
Well for the past couple of years, it has become more and more difficult for me to continue living within my community. The cost of heating fuel has increased, the cost of health care has grown, and the cost of food has increased. But, my wages have not.
Something needs to change, I guess it has to be me. If I want to earn a better salary, then I need to have a better job. To do that, I need to improve my skills by going back to school and earning that degree.
How will you pay for your education?
When I first started looking at colleges, I didn’t know anything about financial aid. I thought one had to pay out of their own pocket for schooling since it had been years since I had applied to go to school. Financial aid packages were only for the students that were heading to college right after high school. At least that was what I thought. Had I only known…
Have you ever wondered if you could afford it?
I thought, I could take out a loan, or put my education on a credit card. But that sort of financing would only cover the cost of one or two terms. I lacked the cash or monetary funds to pay for the courses from my own pocket. Scholarships would work, but how does one get them? Especially when they have been out of school for so long?
More than likely you can afford the cost of college if you have never enrolled.
I hemmed and hawed about going back to school until my student advisor told me that it wasn’t as expensive as I thought.
How could $380 a credit not be considered expensive?
She had me apply for financial aid, otherwise known as a Pell Grant.
Pell Grants are money from the Federal Government that is used to pay for a higher education. This money is not paid back. The loans that follow that is what is paid back over time.
This money is based on your income. You submit a copy of your tax return and then the government decides how much money and what kind of money you qualify for based on your income. Then you don’t need to repay the loans until you are done with school or drop your course load below full-time status.
Are you still wondering if you can afford to go back to school?
Visit https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/fafsa to learn how you could afford your higher education.