Going back to school is often the last thing on every professional’s mind. It’s nearly two decades’ worth of learning that they just managed to finish, and landing right back into a classroom isn’t the most pleasant thought for most people. After all, it is true that there are plenty of things about your life and career that educational institutions can’t teach you. Why not focus instead on learning as you progress your career?
The problem with this mindset is that it prevents you from seeing the other side of the equation–the part that shows not everyone left school fully equipped to succeed in their careers. You could be specializing in an industry different from what you studied in university, or you could be in highly progressive fields like medicine and engineering. Closing your door to the possibility of continuing your education shuts you off from opportunities only it can open in your career and your life as a whole.
Your Promotion Can Depend on It
In a company of highly skilled individuals, standing out could be as simple as furthering your education. A lot can be said about people who value learning and are actively investing in their own growth. This is an attribute that companies can inspire in their employees but never surely ingrain in them. So, seeing you balance your work with your studies yourself is proof of character integral in leadership and the advancement your company may see in its future.
Apart from that, you become more qualified for more complex jobs that require technical knowledge and up-to-date know-how you can only glean by taking extensive courses. Having that additional degree can place you several paces ahead of your colleagues regarding work recognition like promotions and salary raises.
It Improves Your Chances of Getting Higher Pay
This applies not only in your current job but in other positions you may occupy in the future. Having that degree or certification in your resume gives you the confidence and the right to demand a higher starting salary.
In general, people with college degrees receive a starting salary that is significantly higher than their non-degree holder counterparts. For many people who don’t have the privilege of financial support and or ready funds to use, this means putting out money to access this benefit. The payout in your career, later on, is worth it, however. You can simplify the process of acquiring another degree by taking advantage of RPL courses. Your previous work and school experiences might be proven to be relevant for the course you intend to take. They can be credited to study units and fast-track your education.
Once you’ve earned your diploma or certification, you can even transition to better career opportunities that guarantee higher pay.
Diversify Your Opportunities
It’s not unheard of to launch your career in one industry and be successful in another. If you feel your interests shifting, going back to school can diversify your career opportunities. It can be as drastic as moving from interior design to medicine or something subtler like teaching ESL online to qualify as a university professor. The opportunities are as varied as they are satisfying when you further your education.
All of these positive changes could be the way you’ll achieve fulfillment in life. When you have financial stability, you can enjoy vacations and other privileges that improve your quality of life. When you’re working in a job you’re passionate about, the challenges and frustrations don’t make you feel hopeless and lost. Career satisfaction and financial security achieved by continuing your education can lead to more favorable circumstances that allow you to pursue what makes you happy at different stages of your life.
There’s nothing like the challenge of mastering new knowledge or skill and collaborating with a wider network of people to develop yourself. Each new course and experience gives you the chance to be mentally tougher. You’ll also meet people who will inspire you to try new ideas, question your existing beliefs, and teach you greater empathy for others.
Of course, you can also get this in a work environment, but campuses and classrooms offer a less stressful learning atmosphere. There’s no pressure of losing your job or angering your boss, only the bliss of making new acquaintances without facing dire consequences.
Taking the First Step
Formal education takes many forms today. You can attend university in person with a regular or irregular schedule, take online courses, or start small by taking short courses. Attend workshops and free seminars and research your options. The world is indeed your classroom. You have to know where to look for the right opportunities and which ones to pursue.