So what are you going to do with that?
I believe that is my favorite question as soon as someone chooses a major or decides on continuing their education. Yet, in actuality what they are really asking is for justification for the time and money spent on the education.
So, let’s really look at it. What are you going to do with that? How do you justify the expense? Are you too old to go back to school to retool yourself? Are you too young and simply don’t understand the opportunity afforded you?
The response can take several different aspects, but I think the best option is to ask:
What will I learn from a college education?
Graduates, old and young, discuss the importance of a college education. Mostly they talk about not only what they learned from a classroom and a textbook, but the many ways in which they grew. Here are some of the reasons to go to continue your education:
- Knowledge is eternal. It is the one thing you do take with you beyond the grave.
- You learn more than the content in a textbook or classroom. You will learn work ethic, prioritizing, scheduling, perseverance and lifelong learning skills.
- You get to know yourself better. This would include your personality, work style and learning style.
- Networking opportunities with classmates, peers, faculty, and staff.
- Developing learning skills.
- Learning self-discipline.
- Prioritizing what really matters.
- Gathering resources.
- Developing work ethic.
- Understanding your natural clock and scheduling around it.
- Staying healthy or self-care.
- Attaining a sense of accomplishment and feeling successful.
- Learning tolerance of others.
- Advocating for oneself as well as learning to say no -not spreading yourself too thin.
- Writing and communication skills increase.
- Setting long-term goals, intermediary goals and immediate goals as well as learning how to meet each of these goals.
So, what are you going to do with that? I think the better question is what won’t you do with that?
By Tracy Atkinson
Tracy Atkinson, mother of six, lives in the Midwest with her husband. She is a teacher, having taught elementary school to higher education, holding degrees in elementary education and a master’s in higher education. Her passion is researching, studying and investigating the attributes related to self-directed learners. She has published several titles, including The Art of Learning Journals, Calais: The Annals of the Hidden, Lemosa: The Annals of the Hidden, Book Two, Rachel’s 8 and Securing Your Tent. She is currently working on a non-fiction text exploring the attributes of self-directed learners: The Five Characteristics of Self-directed Learners.