Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Non-Traditional Student Necessary Attributes

I have just over a year before I graduate from WGU with a B.S. in Health Informatics. It has been a challenging, difficult, amazing, and mind-blowing experience, to say the very least. I am definitely classified under the "non-traditional" category of college student - 56 years old, married, mom to 5 adult children, grandmother to 16 ranging in age from 20 to 1, work full-time at a state university (nearly 30 years there), and soon-to-be deacon's wife (an entirely different blog post!). I have never been known for being traditional in any form or fashion; however, I never thought I would be pursuing my first bachelor's degree in my 50's. 

If you have thought about obtaining your degree, at any age after mid-20's, attending an online university should be at the top of your list. There are a few other considerations you will need to review before shelling out lots of money towards your degree. 

Are you self-motivated? If you need special considerations, have any issues with reading comprehension, or you are a big procrastinator, an online degree program is probably not your best choice.

Do you know where you want to focus your education? This is not the place (or time) to be uncertain of "what you want to be when you grow up". Research, search your heart, and find your "place" and THEN search for a matching degree program. 

Be realistic. Do not expect this to be easy. Expect long hours studying; lots of missed social occasions; emotional issues because you are focused so intently on one goal; and friends and family, although usually very supportive normally, to be upset because you won't give up an evening of studying to see a movie or have dinner with them. 

Alternatively, you must take some time for you and your family during the several years you will be pursuing your degree. My husband and I have at least two date nights a month and if there is a family gathering that I wish to attend, I work extra hard the week prior so I do not feel guilty or worry about the time I am "wasting" at the social event or date! Balance is the word of the day.

I will continue this article at a later date.....too much information for one blog post. God bless and if you have questions, please write a comment and I will get back to. Until next time.....

No comments: