If you graduated a while ago and have been working ever since you may have thought your school days were long gone. You may even be closer to retirement age than to school age and have never dreamed of going back to school. However, in many cases, postgraduate education is needed to advance your career. For example, if you were a nurse interested in becoming a research nurse or a lecturer, you might need to go on to study doctor of nurse practitioner programs to gain the qualifications you need. When you’ve been out of education for a while, it can come as a bit of a shock, both to your mind and your wallet. Here are the best ways to cope.
Budget for it
Tuition fees are expensive; much more so than when you last went to college. So, make sure you are prepared for the cost, especially if you plan to take some time off work or reduce your hours in order to commit to your studies.
Online study is a fantastic option when returning to school after a long break. It gives you the chance to work around family or work commitments at your own pace. It also means you can work from the comfort of your own home without needing to be thrown back into a school atmosphere. An online course like an MSN to DNP online is a great chance to learn new skills while you work and studying online around work shows how committed you are to advance your career.
Set Aside Study Time
Finding time to study around everything else is one of the hardest parts of returning to school. When you were in high school or college that may have been all you had. But, now you’ve got to fit your studies around responsibilities and commitments. Do this by trying to set aside some study time when you can. This might mean studying before work some days, on your days off, or it could mean arranging child care one day a week. Whatever you chose, try your best to stick to a routine that helps you get into the right frame of mind to study.
Don’t underestimate how difficult returning to school will be. You may be overwhelmed by the workload to start with so give yourself time to adjust and ask for extra help if you need it. Also, make sure you don’t underestimate yourself. If you’ve been working in your field for years, you know your stuff. You can do this.
Look After Yourself
The key to success when it comes to returning to school is taking great care of yourself. Make sure you get plenty of sleep, eat well, and exercise when you can. This will help to keep you alert, focused, and energized.
Take a Break
Remember, you are allowed a break. Try to take a full day off from work and study when you can to either relax or do something you enjoy. Taking the occasional break can help you to get a good night’s sleep, reduce your stress levels, and stop you picking up coughs and colds. So, make sure you do it.
Whatever your reasons for returning to school, you are sure to love it. It can be challenging, but also very rewarding and most people appreciate education much more after a break.