Three Signs that It’s Time to Go Back to School

Posted by Kelli McKinney

going back to schoolWhen faced with the things called “life decisions” – you know, those times when you feel like whatever you choose is going to have a big effect on you and everyone you care about – wouldn’t it be great if there was some sort of signal that told you that you were on the right track? A universal “Do this!” signal – or “Don’t Do This!” warning would be such a huge time saver, wouldn’t it?

While this article can’t really help you with all life’s important decisions, it might give you something to think about as you consider going back to school and finishing your degree.

If any of the following scenarios apply to you, it very well could be time to dust off your military education benefits and start finding a degree program that’s right for you.


Scenario # 1: You’ve Already Lived a Dream

If you are one of those fortunate people for whom their passion became their work – for example, if you dreamed of being a soldier and joined the Army after high school – you may find yourself ready to set your next goal.

It’s an amazing, beautiful thing to be satisfied with your work. Alternatively, when you hit a plateau and find yourself wondering “is this it?” – Well, that’s the opposite of satisfying and amazing.

One hallmark sign of successful people is that they are continually learning, growing, and setting new goals for themselves. If you find yourself wondering what the next challenge will be, you might be ready to chart yourself a new course. Going back to school is a great place to get ideas and start fresh.


Scenario #2: You’re Getting Lots of Interviews, but No Job Offers

Although this could also be considered a sign of a lousy job market, which is a sad reality, it can also be a sign that you need to strengthen your qualifications. No matter how much experience you gained, even in the military, there are some employers who only give serious consideration to candidates with a degree.

There’s no better way to increase your odds in a dicey job market than investing in your education and training. Being the strongest job candidate you can possibly be means finishing that degree – or starting a new one –so that you put your best foot forward.

Military service members, military spouses and their families can benefit even greater from perks like tuition assistance, the GI Bill, and earned credit transfers that will make your tuition dollars work harder.


Scenario #3: You’ve Been Passed Over for Promotion

There’s nothing more frustrating than putting in the hours and earning positive performance reviews but still being passed over for a promotion because your education level wasn’t where the boss thinks it should be. This can be aggravating for military spouses as well as transitioned service members.

This is also a huge red flag if you know that reductions in workforce are looming ahead. When layoffs lurk, those without a college degree are more vulnerable to the RIF than degree holders.

Fortunately, with online education programs, you can keep your day job while earning your degree. With unemployment hovering around those double-digits, increasing your odds at job security is worth the extra time it might take to earn that degree.


Sure, it would be great if life decisions came with a handy dandy checklist or – better yet – instruction manual and crystal ball, but they don’t. Trust yourself to know what’s best for you and your family, do your homework, and know that investing in yourself is never a waste.

If you are looking for a great place to start your search for a degree program, check out School Finder tool. You can search based on a number of military-friendly attributes through a database of more than 4,000 schools, and find information about degree and certification programs.


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