Trying to Advance Your Career? 6 Top Benefits of Going Back to School Marketing and Communications | October 3, 2023 When you’re trying to take your career to the next level or switch to a new job altogether, going back to school could be the key. Whether your highest educational level is a high school diploma or a bachelor’s degree, returning to school for additional education can be a highly effective way to develop new skills that can enhance your career. How might going back to school help you develop your career? “Should I Go Back to School?” Deciding to go back to school can seem complicated, especially when you’re working full-time. You might need to attend classes in person, depending on the program you choose, and you’ll also have to keep up with schoolwork while handling your usual work responsibilities. Keep in mind that several degree program formats and options are available, including programs that offer flexible schedules for working professionals. Going back to school might come with some challenges, but doing so provides you with the knowledge and skills needed to advance or switch careers. 6 Reasons Going Back to School Could Advance Your Career Taking the time and effort to earn a degree provides the following benefits that help you make the most of your career. 1. Gain Knowledge/Experience Returning to school for your career allows you to learn new concepts and gain more experience. You can use this new knowledge and experience in an advanced position at your current company, a new opportunity in the field, or even if you plan to switch careers. As part of your degree program, you’ll study concepts and material that you’ll need to move up in your career or change careers. For example, you might study other aspects of your field that you don’t have much experience or knowledge in. This prepares you to take on new career responsibilities or handle different duties and tasks. 2. Grow Your Communications/Soft Skills Earning a degree to advance your career isn’t just about gaining practical knowledge in your field. You’ll also have the opportunity to develop a wide range of soft skills that are just as important for enhancing your career, such as communication, problem-solving, and decision-making skills. When you plan to take on an advanced position in your career, you’ll need to rely on these soft skills in your everyday work duties and interactions with others. For example, going back to school can help you build solid leadership skills, which are needed if you plan to pursue a management position in your field. 3. Shows You Have a Strong Work Ethic Returning to school to earn a degree as a working professional isn’t always easy, but doing so reflects positively on your work ethic. A good work ethic shows supervisors or managers that you’re willing to put in extra effort to achieve your goals. They’ll know you have what it takes to balance work and school effectively. With a strong work ethic, you’ll be in a better position to be considered for advanced roles in your career. Making an effort to gain more knowledge and develop new skills shows that you have the initiative needed for leadership or other advanced positions. 4. Boost Your Confidence Being able to thrive in an advanced position in your field involves more than having the right skills and knowledge. You’ll also need the confidence to take on more challenging duties and responsibilities, especially if you plan on working in a leadership position. Returning to school to earn your degree can help you build self-confidence as you study hard, tackle school projects, and complete coursework. This confidence can help you face the challenges that come with career advancements, such as having to make tough decisions, resolve conflicts between team members, or plan and supervise complex projects. Earning your degree shows you can successfully face challenges and accomplish your goals. 5. Grow Your Network Returning to school helps you advance your career in other ways besides gaining confidence, skills, and knowledge. You’ll also have a chance to expand your network. Going back to school puts you in touch with other working professionals in the same field who might also be trying to enhance their careers. This might open doors for your career while also providing you with a support network of peers to turn to for encouragement during school. You’ll meet faculty in your field who can provide valuable insight to help you advance your career. During your degree program, you might also have opportunities to attend events, such as conferences or workshops, that help you meet leaders in your industry. 6. Energizes You to Succeed and Grow Knowing that you’re working on earning your degree can motivate you to keep growing and thriving. As you study for each test, work on school projects and assignments, and learn new skills and knowledge, you might find that you’re eager to advance your career. You can use this energy to help you succeed in school and at work, especially as you focus on achieving bigger goals in your career. How to Go Back to School as an Adult When you decide to go back to school as an adult to advance your career, your next step is finding the right degree program. This depends on the type of work you do and your career goals, such as moving up to a leadership position or making a career change. You’ll find different format options, including in-person, online, and hybrid programs. An online degree program that fits your goals might prove a suitable option if you want to learn at your own pace while continuing to work at your current job. When you find a program, whether it’s a bachelor’s or master’s degree program, you’ll be on your way to building a more fulfilling career. At Carson-Newman University, we offer several degree programs aimed at helping students advance their careers. For example, our College of Professional Studies includes undergraduate and graduate programs that provide an accelerated and flexible way to earn a degree and develop advanced skills in your field. Our Christian college offers different formats for learning, including online, in-person, and a combination of both. For more information on our degree programs, don’t hesitate to contact Carson-Newman University today.