Going Back To School at 60

It’s true that they say that learning never ends, so just because you’re past the age when people typically go to college or school for a degree, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t learn or gain more knowledge.

When you’re in school, you might be daydreaming about the days when you’ll be financially independent and no longer needs to study or go to school, but once you get there, chances are, you might feel your life become so mundane and boring.

Going back to school in your adult life or past 60 is not unheard of. In fact, you’ll find many programs designed specifically for seniors who want to go back to school. But the main question is why? Why are seniors going back to school? In this article, we’ll talk about why going back to school at 60 or older is an up-and-rising trend. We’ll also share some tips on how you can prepare to go back to school.

Why Are Seniors Going Back To School?

Evolve With The World

According to a study by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 19% of the working population is individuals aged over 65, and this growth is expected to rise by at least 22% by 2026. Hence, seniors in the workforce need to constantly update their skill set and knowledge about specifics, especially regarding new technology. This is one of the many reasons seniors go to school to learn more about the world’s current affairs.

Alternative Career Option

The 60-plus age group is typically looking at retirement from their present job. This can threaten their financial stability, which causes them to pursue further studies so they can apply for jobs post-retirement.

Keeping The Brain Young

According to a study done by The Alzheimer’s Association, senior folks who keep their brains active by learning new things and information have less chance of developing dementia.

Like any other muscle in the body, even the brain needs exercise to maintain its strength in terms of retaining information and using it for complex functions like reasoning and thinking.

In addition, many studies point to the possibility of higher levels of happiness and contentment among older people who maintain active mental health.

Achieving Lifelong Dreams

Many people entering their old age have had to give up their dreams for further studies to take up new responsibilities, such as taking care of the family or starting a family at a young age. They have had to drop out of school or take up a job they weren’t interested in just for a good livelihood.

So when they near retirement, it’s another opportunity for them to realize their almost “lost” dreams and fulfill their dreams as young adults in the quest for quenching their intellectual curiosity.

Learning New Skills

Returning to school in your 60s doesn’t necessarily mean reading books and writing tests. Sometimes it can be in skill training fields like attending cooking classes or pottery, which can turn into a hobby that either takes the boredom out of their retired lives or brings them some contentment in facing new challenges.

School Is More Affordable For Old Folks

With the rise of baby boomers in this generation, which is only expected to rise in the next few years, going back to school has become more affordable than it was when they were younger. As such, the government has also realized the importance of providing affordable tuition fees to older folks who want to go back to school.

For those who couldn’t afford to take classes they were interested in attending, these special offers for those over 60s are a blessing.

Embracing Technology With Online Classes

What seemed like an impossible dream all those years ago is now fully viable because everyone can attend classes from the comfort of their homes. With so many universities and colleges offering online courses on various subjects, it is easier than ever to pick a course and take a class anytime, anywhere.

Some Tips To Get Seniors Ready To Go Back To School

Ask About The Financial Aid Plans From The College

Most of the top universities these days offer different kinds of financial aid for seniors who want to return to school. One of the popular savings options you can avail of is the 529 savings account which lets you create an account for college funds. If you already have this account in your child’s name who has attended college, you can even change the beneficiary of the funds to yourself if there are some unused funds.

Find Out The Different Types Of Courses The Colleges Offer

You may need more flexibility in class hours for personal reasons. For such cases, it’s better to know beforehand the different possibilities the college is willing to offer you. Some colleges have evening classes, while others provide remote courses, which are great for individuals who cannot commute to class regularly.

Transfer Your Credits

Don’t be ashamed to state if you have previously attended college and dropped out. Instead, you can use this to your advantage. You may have already earned a few credits transferable to the new program you’re enrolling in. This can help boost your application.

Never Shy Away From Asking For Support

One of the rising and alarming trends that overcome many seniors is losing their independence as they grow older. Trying not to do this might make it hard for them to ask for help when needed.

Given that they are already near retirement, it is safe to assume they are not the most technologically adept individuals. With much of the educational sector embracing technology, it might be difficult to get the hang of it.

But this shouldn’t stop them from pursuing their dreams. Establishing support groups such as your circle of friends who are ready to help you with the complexities of the new generation or even family members who can teach you the basics is an excellent way to get ready for school. There’s no shame in asking for help when you need it. It could help make going back to college at an old age much more accessible and smooth sailing.

Isaac Abernathy
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Isaac Abernathy

Shaping the future with compelling content that inspires curiosity and lifelong learning.