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Joined: 3/15/2006
Msg: 87
Going back to school in your 30's....Page 2 of 11    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11)
I didn't get my grad degree til I was 38. I'd probably go back for my Ph.d if I had nothing better to do ~ but I'm sort of schooled out. It's never too late though.
Joined: 5/13/2006
Msg: 91
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Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 9/5/2007 3:39:08 PM
Just wanted to jump in again and encourage everyone and a big and to all those who've taken the step and made the commitment.

As I posted earlier, I taught college part time evenings for a few years. My "mature" (meaning not post high school) students were on average the more focused and serious about their education. A joy to teach and just to work with elbow to elbow sharing life experiences and making their educational experience a full and rich one.

I went back myself, mid 30's finished my Associates, straight through to Bachelors. A few years later, on to grad school and finished at 43. One thing my kids DID make me do is attend graduation. I'm glad they did, and do get as many people as you can to be there with you. It's a celebration, make a day of it and enjoy the moment as a big accomplishment.

As a mature student and former educator, I'll pass on a few tips:

As a student, you are the consumer, so be a smart one. Ask questions, and make sure you are satisfied with the answers. Check out the accreditation and make sure that if you're working towards something, your school's accreditation will be accepted. Do your homework before you register and don't let anyone pressure you. All schools have to be accredited, just to be able to give you a diploma, certificate, etc. This may be important, you'll only know for sure if you know what questions to ask and verify it for yourself.

Your education is your responsibility. Teachers, academic materials are tools for you to use. Your teacher is a team member to help you accomplish your goals, it's up to you to do your part. In class time is limited, and no instructor can "teach" all of the material in a few hours. Don't expect to go to class and take notes and think all of the material will be covered and you'll be ready for a test.

Instructors' one to one time is also limited, so only ask about concepts you didn't understand from reading or working problems. I can tell you for a fact that what you learn on your own you will retain better and longer. If you're in a live class situation, trust that the instructor is giving a quick once over and going over the parts of a chapter that he/she feels most would have trouble grasping just from the text.

Get to know the other students, find a study buddy (I know sounds cheesy) but someone where if you're absent they can tell you what you'll need to do before next class. If possible, form a study group and help each other with homework or studying for an exam.

Be involved, ask for help and be willing to offer help when you can. Your instructor, your fellow students are all valuable resources, in the end it's still up to you to make sure you have understand the curriculum.

Talk to the other students in your program. Find out which instructors they feel do a good job and if possible, register for their classes. Get as much info from them as you can, if they've taken a class that you haven't yet.

Sorry for the length, if someone benefits from my experiences, then it's all good.

Again, way to go for making the decision to invest in yourself. Your education is something you can't lose, or have taken away, it's the only investment that is yours for life. make the most of it.
Joined: 8/8/2007
Msg: 93
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Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 9/10/2007 6:55:55 PM
I dont see a problem with it. My mom went back to college to become a teacher when i was 10, she was 40. Now she has her bachelors degree in teaching. Only big problem was that i got jealous lol. For awhile she wasnt working and i got to spend all my time with my mom, then she went to school and had homework, essays and all that and i just didnt understand lol. Its never to late to go to school and learn.
Joined: 7/29/2007
Msg: 101
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 9/14/2007 8:38:07 PM
Sorry I haven't read through all the posts....but to OP and all those after that have taken the steps to go back to school - It takes a lot of courage, strength and organization (if you have a family). I too want to head back but haven't yet. I will get there. I always think well, I know its free when you turn 60 lol.
Best of luck to all in school!
Joined: 12/9/2005
Msg: 104
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Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 10/4/2007 8:42:40 AM
Congratulations snoogles for deciding to finish school. I have also enrolled in school at
31 and i'm loving it. I've seen a lot, since i'm a 3 time Iraq Vet. Anyway, it's a little harder as we age but, not impossible to get a degree.
Joined: 3/16/2007
Msg: 106
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Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 10/4/2007 10:52:21 PM
Like Nike, just do it. The hardest part is taking that leap into college, trust me. I joined the military at 18 because I did not have the money for college. After 20 years of service I left the military with 2 degrees, unfortunately I didn't want to pursue a career in either field, so guess what. I am back in college full time pursuing another degree. The hardest part of all of this was getting started, of course then you have to deal with all the things others have posted here. The biggest for me is the age difference, you just don't feel connected with most of the "children" on the campus. Look around there are lots of older students returning to college these days, I found a group at my current college for older students that has many good people that are more than willing to help you out with anything.

Good luck
Joined: 8/14/2007
Msg: 111
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Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 10/10/2007 9:57:41 AM
i got my first degree when i was 32 and i'll be 41 when i finish my second. being a single parent in school ain't easy.

speaking of which, my school, st ambrose university in davenport, iowa, is trying to start a kind of campus club for parents and other non-traditional students. we had our first meeting yesterday. any schools have programs like this? we want to include day care that could be run by the early childhood education students, a safe lounge, dedicated parking and other stuff.
Joined: 8/20/2006
Msg: 114
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Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 11/17/2007 6:14:16 PM
Learning is a long life experience.
Joined: 7/3/2005
Msg: 121
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 11/22/2007 11:21:55 PM
I'm starting school in Jan. well because I need a deg. to go further with the company that I work for. They are paying for it as well, so why not. If I can keep getting good grades it will be paid for 100%. and for personal growth as well, as I wasn't able to finnish college after high school. well scratch that, I was kicked out of high school and got my GED. Since my older brother is doing it as well, I might as well too and show him up LOL..
Joined: 8/13/2007
Msg: 127
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 11/25/2007 8:58:31 PM
I took a class, just one, when I was 33 and boy did I feel out of place, nobody said anything derogatory to me and everyone was nice but the culture shock was the hardest part for me to get over. I'm not exactly an outgoing person either, I don't even like going for groceries or to the mall, University was a completely alien social environment.

Most days at first I was sweating like a criminal on death row, a half hour into the class and my stomach was growling I was so hungry (I guess my brain was working). Eventually I got used to it except for the late nights trying to understand things that seemed impossible for humans to understand.

I was lucky the University had a Mature and Part-Time Student Association, I was surprised to learn how many people at the University were mature (over 22 years old) students, I think it was something like 20% or more of the total students.

Unfortunately I couldn't continue and I lost momentum, it's a bit embarrassing not to have completed University I consider education important and I love to learn, I am always reading. Friends and co-workers have called me smart but I feel like an impostor for not having a formal education.

Go if you can! Even if you can't...and pay for it later.
 ab initio
Joined: 11/21/2006
Msg: 130
Posted: 11/26/2007 9:00:22 PM
I went to undergrad in my late-teens/early 20's. Worked in IT for most of my 20's - laid off and went to law school on another continent. Back here getting certified and practise. So now, I work full time (yep, back in IT) while I study part time to get accreditation next year and pay off a massive debt. I'm 31, and if I could replay the choice I made I'd do the same thing.

If you're 30+ and back at schooling, I give you all the credit and all the luck in the world. Persevere - f*ck stigma; education is the the best gift and strongest asset you can acquire regardless of age
Joined: 7/14/2006
Msg: 132
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 11/27/2007 5:19:32 AM
Like many of you I also had a bit of down time before starting college at 33. I was apprehensive about how I would "fit in" with the younger crowd. Needless concerns, I met several fellow students and am still in touch with many of them 30 years later. The unexpected part was that I was older and more world-wise than some of the professors. One result was that they seemed to respond to me better than they did to the other students. This was especially true in PolSci and Philosophy classes where opinion and interpretation were more to be considered than facts. At times I felt like the loyal opposition in the classroom discussions. The bottom line was that, despite the long hours and frustrations, I've had a much better life than I would have otherwise. Not just the material rewards of a better job, more pay, etc.; but a richer, fuller life than had I not been exposed to so many different disciplines. Best of luck to all of you who have decided to take the plunge.
Joined: 10/28/2007
Msg: 138
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 12/11/2007 9:40:27 PM
Good for you Snoogles!

I went back in 2003 at the age of 39. I got sick of low-paying jobs that got me nowhere in life. Oh, and I got laid off in January of 2004. I had gone during the early 90s but dropped out due to a lack of focus and alcohol problems. Anyway, when I returned in 2004 I was much more focused and determined. I did very well and now I'm almost finished with graduate school.

Here's a piece of advice from an old guy. If you have the drive, you'll do well. It's been my experience that students over 30 years of age do better than many of the younger students. Not all of them, mind you, but many of them. However, try to keep some balance in your life. Yes, good grades are important, but not at the expense of hobbies or friends or recreational activities.

Good luck Snoogles!
Joined: 5/1/2006
Msg: 139
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Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 12/21/2007 5:03:12 AM
I went back to school (still there in fact) at the tender age of 43. At the end of the year, we had exams. The LAST time I had exams before that was in 1980 (before most of the class was even BORN)! DOH!!!

Toe knee :-)
Joined: 3/18/2005
Msg: 146
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 12/24/2007 8:38:58 PM
Im 37 and going to get an electronics degree. Does it count if its through the army?? haha their sending me for 8 months of school in Ga. So far its great. I guess it makes a difference since its a millitary school.
Joined: 12/4/2007
Msg: 148
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 12/26/2007 8:45:54 PM
I went back to school when I was 36. It was probably the most grueling two years of my life! I worked full time during the day, went to school full time at night (5 hours a night) and still managed to keep my house and kids running smoothly. But it was well worth it. I not only got my degree (and a better job because of it), but the sense of accomplishment was wonderful! I graduated with a 3.95 GPA.

And I set an example for my children that you can do anything if you put your mind to it.
Joined: 7/28/2007
Msg: 151
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 12/28/2007 5:00:38 PM
I went back to school when I was 33 shortly after my father passed away the year before. I felt sad and it motivated me that I never finished more than my AS degree while he was living. So I did it for him and I did it for me, and finished my Bachelors of Business Administration in December of 2006. Took a year off, and now start my MBA with emphasis' in Finance and International Business. Also considering some other choies, but I want some options besides the same customer service job I've had the past ten years. However I paid the price as going back to school contributed (a little) t0 my separation and divorce (finalized in 2006). She wasn't supportive of my going back to school cuz I wasn't there to hold her hand and dote on her like I had, and it didn't surprise me that she wasn't supportive of that either. Oh, well it all works out I'm happier now and hope someday when I finish school and finish up all the issues from my divorce, house sale, financial situations, etc I will be back into the dateable market. I can sympathize on the being back home at 36, between my divorce, other issues like getting in shape, and working hard to improve myself, I would say I am undateable too.
Joined: 8/19/2004
Msg: 154
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 12/29/2007 11:03:56 AM
I finished my graduate degree when I was 31, it was difficult, although not as hard as it would have been if I had been working full time, was married and had children. I admire people who work full time and go to school and manage to juggle it all and take care of children. Now I cannot seem to get motivated enough to persue another degree.
Joined: 12/6/2007
Msg: 160
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 1/22/2008 1:25:17 PM
Graduated from UdeM in 93 at 26 y/o with a BA in Ed. Major industrial technologies and minor in physics. After 10 years on the job went for a 5th certificate in computer science ed. online with UdeQu├ębec while still working full-time. Now I'm waiting to get an answer from NBCC to take an introductory course in general welding (gas, arc, TIG and MIG) for the rest of this winter since my teaching contract finishes on the 29th of this month. Yup! nowadays one has to keep recycling or take new avenues to make himself (herself) more employable in almost any domain of work. I find it's all good though.

Joined: 3/4/2006
Msg: 165
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 1/26/2008 2:15:06 PM
Well I just finished another two years of College three years ago, so i'm finished with school.
Joined: 8/21/2005
Msg: 168
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 1/29/2008 11:33:15 PM
*Cringes* Being a single mom is extremely difficult! Got my Counselor Technician a couple of years ago, and I've gone back to school and on my way to hopefully getting my Associates and then on to Bachelors either in Comm. Psych. or Social Work. Not only that but I have a full time job, two girls who are also busy with after school programs (8 combined) and going to Arctic Winter Games in Yellowknife Canada, not to mention performances or competitions, have to start building my house this spring - this housing program is like Habitat Housing, you have to earn so many hours. Having a foster child who never had routine, chores, or had no consequences is time consuming. But she's one heckuva girl who excels in what she's determined to do once set in motion.
It's well worth it though because my one and only considers me her role model. Can't beat that eh?
Joined: 1/11/2006
Msg: 169
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Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 1/31/2008 6:48:46 AM
I'm 35 and just finished my a full time 2 year program in business. It definitely was scary, but I learned so much more then just what I was studying. The 'youth' that you are surrounded by makes you aware of so much more! Best experience ever !
Joined: 10/11/2006
Msg: 172
Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 1/31/2008 9:22:55 PM
*raises hand* I returned to school because of a divorce. Like you, I was married for most of my 20's. I worked up until I had my son and I never worried about a career because my ex and I had decided I would stay home to raise our son. Well life is funny and never turns out as we plan so I ended up having to return to school in order to plan for my future. It was the best decision of my life! I think it's never too late to work on your education or career goals. I am so glad I have. I graduate in June and I will have finished the program I am in then as well too. I will be able to start my new career.

Best wishes to you!
Joined: 1/20/2008
Msg: 173
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Going back to school in your 30's....
Posted: 2/2/2008 2:11:35 AM
I am currently in university, 1 more year to go for my degree. At first I was scared to death but it was definately the right move. Of course now that I only have a year to go I am considering graduate studies. Odds are I will be 40 or close to it by the time I am done, but I don't really care. This is something I am doing for me.
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