7 Strategies for Earning a Degree While Working
Plan to succeed at school while succeeding at work
If you can't quit work to go back to school (and most people can't) there are strategies for creating a successful coexistence between this new demand and your already full plate. An estimated 45 percent of students work more than 20 hours per week while going to school.
At Bellevue University nearly 90% of students are working or participating in intercollegiate athletics. With a variety of in-class and online schedule options, a liberal credit transfer policy and a supportive environment, Bellevue University strives to help working students overcome those obstacles.
Finances and the time commitment are among the top reasons students stop out in the process before degree completion. There are ways to balance school, work and life. Consider the following seven strategies while preparing to go back to school:
- Find what fits your life: Education has transformed over the past few decades. Many institutions offer night classes for people who work full time during the day, or online for people who have varying schedules or who cannot make it to a campus location.
- Line up your finances: Many companies offer tuition assistance, but if you will be financing your own way get a plan in order. Explore going part time in order to pay as you go. Look for scholarships and grants to cut down your costs.
- Know your limits: In addition to easing finances, going part time, or attending a school focused on adult learners can keep you from taking on more than you can handle.
- Receive credit for previous education: If you have started school and stopped in the past, you may have credits that can transfer in saving you both time and money. Some schools also give credit for military or corporate training so be sure to ask an advisor or enrollment counselor at any school you consider.
- Create a support network: For working adults with families who enroll in college, setting aside time for everyone to do homework can be an opportunity for your children to see you study. If your children are younger, set aside time for you that your spouse or a family member can watch them while you concentrate. Letting people know about your goal can help you receive encouragement along the way which you may need as things get tough.
- Schedule a specific time to study: Having a dedicated time to study each week can lessen the stress of worrying about completing work projects and homework.
- Stay focused at work: Many employers are supportive and actually encourage employees to further their education. It is important that you keep up your performance at work while balancing the demands of school.
Whether you are taking one class at a time or are able to manage a more robust schedule, returning to school is a goal with a clear ending. It is not easy to balance the demands of work, life and school but the reward of earning your degree should stay in focus. By knowing the strategies to overcome the obstacles that can often stop students, you can be one of those who succeed.
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