View Full Version : Back to School

James Jaragosky
02-19-2009, 8:46 PM
I have decided to go back to school and get a degree.
Most recently I was a project manager for a major home builder. Things do not look good for a recovery in the building industry any time soon so I have decided to go back to school.
Due to the fact that I took my ACT test over 30 years ago I had to take an entrance exam today. I fared much better than I would have thought, I nearly aced everything, Except Algebra.
So starting this summer I will finely start working on that collage degree I put off 30 years ago; marriage and kids came first. Seems like I do everything backwards, or the most difficult way possibly.:rolleyes:
Jim J.

Ken Fitzgerald
02-19-2009, 9:07 PM
Go gettum' Jim!

Steve Schlumpf
02-19-2009, 9:10 PM
Good for you!!!

Jim Becker
02-19-2009, 10:01 PM
Sounds like a plan!!!

Bob Rufener
02-19-2009, 10:06 PM
Going back to school isn't easy after being away from it for 30 years. My hat is off to you for going ahead and doing it. Best wishes to you and I hope it works out well for you.

Brian Effinger
02-19-2009, 10:12 PM
Good for you, James. I got my bachelors 10 years ago, and have thought about going back for my masters several times, but just can't bring myself to doing it.
Good luck. :)

Greg Cuetara
02-19-2009, 10:16 PM
Good for you. I stayed in school through my masters degree and couldn't have done it any other way. My wife on the other hand went back after 5 or 6 years. It certinally does take a lot to go back and I wish you good luck.

Bruce Page
02-19-2009, 11:01 PM
James, that's great. What direction do you plan on going?

James Jaragosky
02-19-2009, 11:40 PM
James, that's great. What direction do you plan on going?

I did not mention that, due to not wanting the thread to wander into the locked zone;).
I have chosen human services as my new career. Within the last year I have rediscovered my higher power; and after careful self examination, I have determined that if I am lucky I may have 25 to 30 productive years left.
With that in mind I decided to choose a field that will allow me to help my fellow man more directly.
The pay is not great but the rewards should be out of this world.:)
Thanks for asking
Jim J.

Greg Cuetara
02-20-2009, 5:56 PM
Again good for you for going back to school. I was watching 20/20 or dateline a few weeks back and they were talking about people going to school for social work and how a college degree was a scam and not worth it. Some of these students were walking out with 150k in loans and the max they were looking at making was about 25k to 30k / year. I am a firm believer that more education is always a good thing. School is what you make of it and how much you put into it.

Gene Howe
02-20-2009, 6:07 PM
Good on ya, Jim. Both, for going back to school and, for your chosen field.

Don Bullock
02-20-2009, 11:15 PM
Hey Jim, I wish you the best in you decision to go back to school. Take it one day at a time and go with the flow of what your instructors want from you.

Mitchell Andrus
02-20-2009, 11:37 PM
I went back in 1990-1992 just to brush up on some stuff and to get out of the house.... 35 more credits and I could've gotten a major but that's not why I went back. I was just feeling as though my skill-set was slipping.

You're going to love it. You'll show up the young-uns in every class as you'll have real life examples to use in discussions.

Use the word "rebuke" in sociology just once and you're a God to the kids.

Good luck and keep us posted. We want to see the report card.

$10.00 for every A, $5.00 for every B.

02-21-2009, 2:02 AM
Iam wishing you all of the best,Jim!


Rich Engelhardt
02-21-2009, 7:05 AM
In 1988, after spending about 20 years in the retail field, I quit working and went back to school.
I decided to use the burned bridges route, just so there was no going back.
I was in a position of coming fresh out of school and being an "entry level", just months shy of being 40.
Trust me here - filling out a job application and listing you high school graduation date, as being a year or two before the interviewer for the job was born, is no picnic. ;)

- You have to treat it like a job. Keep nose to grindstone and stay on a fixed schedule. I had classes from 8 am until 12 pm Mon-Fri. From 1pm until 6 pm, I set aside all that time for study - over and beyond what we covered in class. If there were assignments to be completed outside of class, those were done after 6 pm. Plan to devote a set number of hours each day to review what you cover in class, in extreme detail.
Your goal is a perfect 4.0 average & perfect attendance. Settle for nothing less.
Coming out of school, at your age, and entering a field in which you have no experience is tough. You'll need every edge you can get.

- Make sure your wife is behind you 100%. Odd chores, running to the store, etc. absolutely cannot interfere with your study time.
- Hand in hand with the above is $$. Make sure you have enough banked to carry you through. Also,see if your wife is willing to take on a second (or in our case, a third) job if money runs short.
My wife worked a full time job, and two part time jobs for the months I was in school.

- Student loans. I hate them. IMHO, one of the biggest reasons we're in such sad shape as an economy. We scrimped, cut, scrounged and tightened our belts to the max so we could pay off my student loans within the 6 month grace period after I graduated. Borrow only what is the bare minimum you need.

Within the last year I have rediscovered my higher power; and after careful self examination, I have determined that if I am lucky I may have 25 to 30 productive years left<-- that's your biggest asset!
Even though I had the grades, the awards and the recommendations of all the teachers in the classes I took, it was my zeal for my chosen career path that landed me no less than 5 job offers - a month prior to graduation.
An enthusiastic approach is your ace in the hole.
When I was in a position of hiring people, I always believed I could teach anyone anything - except attitude.
(In my years in retail mgt., of the people I hired, I had zero turnover with one notable exception - anyone I'd hired only left me to be promoted.)

It's a tough row you've chosen to hoe. Believe me. Been there/done that.
It's also, if you apply yourself, a very rewarding task.
Like youth, education is wasted on the young.
Take the time to enjoy and savor every hour you spend along the way.
The ~ 18 months I spent in school were some of the fondest memories I have, both from an academic viewpoint & a marital one.
We had one money crisis after another during that time, and we managed to work it out as a team.
(We often took a hand in hand stroll - looking for aluminum cans we could sell for scrap. Those few extra dollars it brought in of en made the difference between making the mortage payment or not making it.)

Enjoy! BTW - why stop at only 25 or 30 years?
At 57, I'm in the process of changing careers after ~ 20 years in the computer field. Unlike the last shift, I'm easing into this one.
I may spend from 2 days, to 10 more years in it :D. But, I do plan to "get out" a some point and go full bore into something else - for another 20 years. After that, I'm thinking about what I want to do next :D.

Sorry to be so long winded - but I'm getting pumped about making a jump myself.

James Jaragosky
02-21-2009, 1:26 PM
I want to thank everyone for the support, well wishes, and advice.
I am both excited and apprehensive at the same time.

If our economic situation stays the same; we will be fine while I go back to school. We have been blessed; and have saved enough for a rainy day.

Financially my new chosen field will be a big shock;
and will require some major adjustments on our spending habits.

My wife is behind be all the way; Without her full support, I would not be able make this leap of faith.

Thanks again
Jim J.