I asked myself the same question last year and decided that I did want to go back to school. I have been bouncing around from job to job trying to figure out where I fit. I realized that I wasn’t going to be happy unless I made some real changes. I was kind of floating in this purgatory of knowing what I wanted to do but not having the skills I needed to make it happen. That is an extremely frustrating position to be in. So now I’m in a graphic design certificate program and making my way to the future and career that I want. But I know like who the hell cares what you’re doing; what about me, should I go back to school?
There are a couple of questions you should ask yourself before taking the plunge back into education:
1) What kind of debt am I willing to go in?
School is expensive. Even junior college is a couple hundred dollars and if you’re on a tight budget or not working, it could be next to impossible. There are many options out there for scholarships and grants that you should definitely look into before ever going into the realm of student loans. There is nothing wrong with going into student debt (I mean there is, but take that up with the government) if it is a means to an end of you living out your dream. But it’s definitely something you want to think about.
2) Am I dedicated enough?
Are you willing to put the time an effort into your classes that they require? Depending on what kind of classes you’re taking you can essentially expect to do 1-2 hours of work outside of class. It’s a huge time commitment let alone a huge mental commitment.
3) What is my end game?
Is this educational venture going to be worth it for you? Or is it going to be like my undergraduate degree that everyone warned me about? (No I’m not bitter I swear.) You have to weigh your options and decide that the time and effort you put into this is going to be worth it in the end. Your dream doesn’t just happen after you receive the degree or certificate. You still have to keep working at it and be willing to make it happen. It won’t just fall into your lap.
4) Can I do it without traditional school?
There are so many education options now like Lynda or Udemy where you can learn at home. They are, in some cases, much less expensive than traditional schooling. Many of these new types of learning platforms are geared towards creative and computer science areas of study. There are many many successful people that art self taught – but you definitely have to have some serious drive and motivation to do everything on your own.
Nobody can make a big decision, like going back to school, for you. These questions will hopefully give you some insight about where you stand and what you want to do. Make sure you take a good amount of time to decide what you want to do. Maybe even make a pros and cons list. I hope whatever decision you make is the best one for you and that all of your dreams come true.
Are you thinking about going back to school? Why? For what?
|| the chaotic creative