Work Full-Time and Still Go to College: Practical Advice to Ensure Your Success


Going back to school may seem like a monumental task, especially if you’re working a full-time job and caring for your family. There are many long-term benefits that may make earning a degree well worth the effort you put into it. You can balance the scales between work and school if you really put your mind to it. You may have to make a few sacrifices, but in the long run, you will be able to make life for your family a little easier.

Set Reachable Goals

Many students at West Chester University work full-time while attending university. The reasons vary, but if you’re trying to pay for college with graduating with a ton of debt, working full-time may be your only option if your living in off campus housing and need to pay rent. First, know how much time you can commit to earning your degree. While it may sound difficult, many people work full time and go to college at the same time. They are able to balance both equally well. In your first year, you may only be able to manage one or two courses. You don’t have to take a full schedule of classes. Know what you can handle and set your goals accordingly.

Organize Your Time

Before you start classes, take a close look at how you spend your day. Look at your schedule and find time each day when you can set aside an hour or two to study without any interruptions. Start juggling your schedule now so that it won’t be a strain when you are looking for time to sit down and really hit the books. If you want to work full time and go to college, you will want to carry an organizer to keep track of your time.

Communication Is Important

You will want to let your employer know what you are doing. If you are going to school for something that will benefit you in your current job, they may be willing to pay for part of your educational expenses. Let them know your schedule and when your exams are. Most will be more than happy to work with you. Communicate with your professors as well. They will help you stay on track if your work/school/life balance gets a little out of control. They can offer helpful tips to keep you going.

How to Work Full Time and Go to College

Maximize Your Potential

Maximize your potential by making the most of every minute of your day. You never know what opportunities lie right around the corner. Wasting time can be costly if you are trying to improve your life. When you maximize your potential, you begin to pave the way to new doors that will open up a much brighter future.

Practice Self-Care

Don’t forget to practice self-care. We tend to lose ourselves in the shuffle sometimes. Take a few minutes each day to regroup and put your personal thoughts in order. Have a glass of wine (if you’re 21;-) and go for a walk in nature. Do what you need to keep yourself motivated and on track with your goals. Remember, the time you spend on self-care is never wasted.

Think About Your End Goal

Always think about your end goal. There are times when you may be discouraged. We all go through it. Take a few minutes and look forward to the future. Make notes on your calendar that mark each milestone you achieve. These visible reminders will give you the motivation you need to keep moving forward.

Trying to work full time and go to college may sound stressful. If you really want to accomplish your goal of earning a degree and advancing your career, you will find a way to get it done. It may be easier than you think! Take a look around and see where you can make a few compromises. It’s worth the effort and will give you something to work toward!

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