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To go back to school, or not to go back to school, that is the question.

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  • To go back to school, or not to go back to school, that is the question.

    Yea I know an internet message board about your favorite NFL team is not the best place to get advice but I feel its worth hearing some opinions on this subject that has been bugging me lately. I just turned 26 years old yesterday and graduated high school back in 2007, attended community college for a while part time, but never finished my associates. I guess it was a combination of burnout (never really cared for school, but was good at it, never had less than a 3.0 gpa). I got a lot of the pain in the butt classes out of the way. I've been working at a grocery store since I turned 16 (when I was old enough to get a job) and worked my way up through the ranks. Right now i'm the full time night shift manager. I get 3 weeks of vacation a year and ok benefits, problem is I don't make enough money, and I have had to complain and complain and complain to get the pay scale i'm at now. I don't think I will be able to get much more hence my ordeal.

    I never thought I would be here this long but I've got a great boss, and I get every Sunday off so I never miss a game. Problem is I work my butt off while it seems no one else puts in the same amount of effort as I do. Yesterday was my first day back after being on vacation and 40 minutes in I felt like I needed another vacation lol. I ended up working an hour past what I was scheduled to get what needed to be done, done. I've got several friends who now have degrees but are working factory jobs because the pay is better. Heck one has a radiology degree! Hence my predicament. Do I put in the time and money only to have it backfire in my face? Stay at my current job? Or look for a better paying factory job? Any opinions would be greatly appreciated guys. Thank you.
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  • #2
    I say never quit something while you want to quit it. It makes other options seem that much better. When you are happy, mull over the options and see how they sit with you.

    That being said,every year that goes by a return to school gets farther away. More education isn't a bad thing, It raises your ceilings. Don't use it as an escape from something you are not happy with because it was easy for you/you are good at it...it'll get old real fast if your heart ain't into it.
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    • #3
      I would always advice getting a college degree.

      While other good paying jobs are a available that don't require one they aren't ideal. My guess is a factory job is not that much fun and puts you in a much higher degree of safety risk on the job.

      I'm not saying desk jobs are the most fun either but I enjoy mine and I'm never at that much risk of harm.

      If anything I would definitely say a degree gives you more job security. When jobs are hard to come by degrees are going to be first in line to get them for a majority of jobs. Even an associates helps a lot more than a high school diploma. Plus it only takes two years to get.

      The main thing to me is what kind of jobs become available with one versus a few decent ones that don't require one.

      If you are a good student I would definitely say go for it.

      P.S. A degree doesn't guarantee a job either it just increases your chances.
      Last edited by DenverBlood; 07-16-2014, 06:48 AM.
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      • #4
        I know many people that went back to school in their late 20's and got their degree in their 30's. Some even had families and babies. Now, years later, all of them would tell you that doing so was one of the best things they ever did.
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        • #5
          I say go for it. Give yourself the occupational mobility. I'd probably have my degree right now, if wasn't for a series of unforeseen circumstances that left me having to concentrate full time on my job. Eventually, I plan on finishing anyway, and my major doesn't have anything to do with my work. I just want to finish what I started.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Spice 1 View Post
            I say go for it. Give yourself the occupational mobility. I'd probably have my degree right now, if wasn't for a series of unforeseen circumstances that left me having to concentrate full time on my job. Eventually, I plan on finishing anyway, and my major doesn't have anything to do with my work. I just want to finish what I started.
            My major has nothing to do with what I am currently working either.

            When I got hired my first trainer basically said a job like this is your reward for putting in the time and effort and teamwork to get your degree. Most jobs have very little use for what you learn in school.

            It's all the intangibles you learn from achieving it that companies like to see.

            That's why even though it's not a requirement it's definitely easier for a majority of people with a degree to get a job than those who don't have one.
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            • #7
              Roush....this is not an easy decision, therefore we understand your dilemma. And as you mentioned, this may not be the best place to get advice, although I've read a lot of good stuff from some of the members over the years.

              First, try to think of this as an opportunity. And it's never to late to upgrade your skills. Try not to pressure yourself with deadlines. This should be thought of as your ongoing quest to make you even better than you are.

              Second, do you have a field of study you'd like to pursue? Based on the little I know, you would be a good candidate for a business degree/certificate. Combining your current position with some accredited education may get you through the next door of your career. Therefore your current situation is keeping you employed in meaningful work, as a manager, and if I was on a selection committee and saw someone like you, with a solid job and some post secondary education in say, business, I would definitely consider you. Why? Because most employers want people with proven work experience, plus some valued education. Those two ingredients make for a very nice recipe!

              If you are interested in obtaining a business degree/certificate, would your company support you financially? If not, it's not a big deal. Otherwise you should consider enrolling in a program, and maybe just taking one course per term. That way you keep the income/benefits, while feeling positive about the steps you are taking to move up the corporate ladder...and that may even include a better job in your current company.

              Does this interest you? Hopefully it makes sense. I realize that taking a course may tax your energy, but just one at a time. Plus it may help you meet other people in the same situation as you, and open your eyes to better things.

              On the other hand, pursuing a degree/certificate full time will be faster from an educational perspective, but may cause economic pain. I would not recommend that route pending your financial situation.

              All in all, you are still young, and anything you do to upgrade your skills and open your eyes to other things can't be bad. I like the Business education route for you, because you are already in management. Not to worry, you are in a good place my friend.

              (Feel free to pm me if you wish, and good luck!:thumb
              Last edited by CanDB; 07-16-2014, 12:35 PM.

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              • #8
                My advise is this:

                Find a local community college and sign up. See what courses they offer online that will work towards your degree of interest. Take one class on the campus at a time that works with your schedule. Ease into it the first semester and see how it goes. The nice thing about the online classes is you can participate whenever you want-- even Sunday morning.

                Do the same thing the next semester and repeat until you get your Associates. No one will ever be able to take that degree away from you.

                After getting your associates, then evaluate what you want to do. You can still take classes at a University. Many of my classes were in the mornings, but there were also afternoon offerings. It may take you an extra year or two, but the time goes fast and when you are done, it will be well worth it.

                This approach will enable you to work without being overloaded and you can take more or less classes as you see fit. I graduated from a University and I remember my dean saying they had one guy that took like 15 years to graduate because he took only one class a semester-- including summers. Just try something out and adjust as necessary.
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                • #9


                  Only you can decide, best of luck and keep us up to date!
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