3 Tips For Finding the Support to Succeed

Making the transition to college is difficult for anyone.  However, adult students face additional pressures when returning to school.  Family obligations, financial difficulties, and time constraints are just a few of the added burdens an adult has.  So, when making the decision to return to college adult students need to make sure they have support from family members, their workplace, and from the school they are attending.  

  1. Find a College that accommodates the Adult student. 

There are many schools that have put in place programs that make it convenient for adult students to succeed.   The first thing a student should do is make sure that the college has accelerated degree programs in the evening. An accelerated degree program provides the quality and depth of a traditional undergraduate degree with the flexibility of an accelerated evening schedule.  Typically a course is offered in seven to ten week terms that meet once or twice a week.  This allows a student to earn 30 to 36 credits per year toward their degree and finish quickly.  If a student were to take two courses a year in a typical fifteen week semester it could take up to ten years to get a bachelor’s degree.   Finally, most accelerated degree programs offer on-ground, online, and blended course delivery methods.  This gives the student the flexibility to learn anytime or place they have access to the internet. 

  1. Talk to Human Resources and the boss.

Having an employer who supports and encourages a student’s decision to go back to college can provide peace of mind as well as financial benefits.  The typical way an employer assists a student is through tuition reimbursement.  In some instances, this is a 100% refund to the student.  Even if a company offers a more limited benefit it makes sense to investigate the tuition reimbursement policies of an employer.  Another benefit that many employers offer to their workers is flex time.  If a course begins a 6:00 pm and a student needs to leave work early many companies will allow the employee to start an hour earlier.  The important point to remember is that companies want an educated workforce and are willing to accommodate their employees when they go back to college.


  1. Make sure your Family is on Board

For adults, it is critical to talk to family members before going back to college.  Adult students can expect to be in class at least once and usually twice a week.  Homework and class preparation will add another five to ten hours a week.   If an adult’s family supports the decision to go back to college it can have a very positive impact on the student’s  success.   Having a partner who will share household and child care responsibilities is critical.  For adults, it is very important to communicate with family members before going back to college and to keep the lines of communication open once enrolled.    


Remember that going back to college is a big responsibility but with the help of colleges, family members, and employers thousands of adults are graduating from both undergraduate and graduate schools every year. 

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commented 2013-11-06 21:26:48 -0500 · Flag
TY :)