Sunday, September 24, 2017

If 30 Year Old Me Could Give 18 Year Old Me Advice

     I was talking with my husband, the other day, about the possibility of going back to school to get a degree in writing or English. I had been searching for work from home jobs a few days earlier and the jobs that I thought sounded like fun and something that I might like to do required a degree in one of those two fields. So I thought about school, wondering if I would be dedicated enough to go back. I was getting kind of excited about it and decided to talk with him about starting over.
      He listened to what I had to say and then dashed my hopes with just a few sentences. I didn't know that if I already had a degree that I wouldn't be able to get financial aid and getting any other type of assistance would be extremely difficult. If I went back to school, I would have to take out more loans and our lives are already stalled because of the small mountain of loans that we have already taken out.
     I started college when I was 18 years old. I didn't know what I wanted to major in until the end of my Sophomore year. I had changed my major from Psychology to Housing and Environmental design to Marketing and then to Business Administration. I was lucky enough to graduate with a degree within 4 years. I was 22 when I graduated. At 30, I'm still figuring out what I want to do. Some days I think I'd like to open up a bakery and other days I just want to live off of my creative mind. I do know that I enjoy writing and now that I have a better idea of jobs and what different careers look for in a potential employee, I feel saddened that I'm not offered the same help that I was offered when I was 18 and hadn't a clue.
     Now that I'm 30, I know how much of a negative impact school loans have. I know that I'm not going to magically have job opportunities and will be able to pay them off as soon as I can because I'm not going to graduate and get a job that pays me $100,000 a year or more until I've had experience and have worked my way up.

     Being 30 sucks. I'm wiser than my 18 year old self. If I could tell my 18 year old self something without it taking away my kids, I would have told her to research her options. I would have told her that it is possible to get jobs doing things that she loves. I would have told her that when she worked at a university who paid their employees tuition, to get her masters degree before she had to leave that job.
 
     30 year old self is disappointed in 18 year old self. She's also disappointed in the finance industry for taking advantage of other 18 year old selves who have no idea that their choices affect so much of their future. Shame on financial aid for not helping those who got a clue. 

     My husband didn't want to crush my hopes. He worked in financial aid for several years and has an idea of how financial aid works. He knows that I want bigger things in life right now and adding more loans would make it more difficult to achieve those other dreams. So, for now, I will continue to write this blog. I will continue to write my books with hopes that one day I will be published. I'm going to keep on dreaming and keep on doing and I guess I'll do that without a second degree. There used to be this valuable thing called experience that employers loved to see and valued on its own and a degree in a certain field wasn't always needed. I will keep getting experience and keep on keeping on.

     Are there things that you wish you could tell your younger self?

Update:**** I understand now that my husband misunderstood me when I asked him about going back to school. He thought that I was asking about getting another BS. I can't get financial aid for something that I already have. If I wanted to go for my MA, financing would be easier.

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