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I are serious Nugget, I need serious advice

Putting my usual shenanigans and asshatery aside.  So I have an associate's degree in arts.  It's a degree that I can transfer to almost any college in MN to start as a full junior.  I had always planned on doing that somewhat, but then I started working full-time and ended up focusing on that.   My family has been HARPING on me for the last few years to go back and get my degree.  Noodle has made is fairly clear that he'd like me to do it (although it's more of a "you're so smart, you could make more money, you should just go" than "I will divorce you if you don't get your BA.")  HIS parents always ask when I'm going back to school. 

Here's the thing, though - I really don't want to go back to school to get a bachelor's degree.  I keep hemming and hawing, because I don't want to disappoint anybody.  But I really love the job I'm currently doing, and I don't need a BA to do this job.  In fact, I could easily see myself doing this (or a job like this) for the rest of my life.  I'm not making six figures, but I'm making enough that we can maintain a comfortable lifestyle.  I just don't have any desire to go rack up a bunch of student debt for a degree that won't help me in any logical sense right now. 

Anyways.  Am I the only one who thinks like this?  Any suggestions on how I can break this news to my family (who find education VERY important)? 

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Re: I are serious Nugget, I need serious advice

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    I would tell them what you told us- you love your job, which doesn't require a BA, you make enough money to feel comfortable and you don't want to rack up tons of student loan debt.

    Not having SL debt would be awesome. I won't know that feeling for another 7 years.
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    NuggetBrainNuggetBrain member
    First Comment
    edited December 2010
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_serious-nugget-need-serious-advice?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:17Discussion:565fe1d3-e0fb-409e-ae43-2299d159a8f3Post:25a33364-5a33-4f5f-acb4-9a3a0367bcad">Re: I are serious Nugget, I need serious advice</a>:
    [QUOTE]I would tell them what you told us- you love your job, which doesn't require a BA, you make enough money to feel comfortable and you don't want to rack up tons of student loan debt. Not having SL debt would be awesome. I won't know that feeling for another 7 years.
    Posted by maratea[/QUOTE]

    I'm a big fat weenie when it comes to stuff like this with my family.  I don't know why, my mom and grandma and I will yell at each other and fight all the time, but it's so much easier for me to deal with pissing them off then disappointing them.  I kinda tried that, and my mom and my grandma looked so upset.  And then they threw out the "your grandpa always wanted you to finish school, you know how important education was to him." And then I feel like TOTAL ass, so I always end up saying "well maybe I'll go back in a year..."
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    Im having similar issues, I do have my bachelors, but everyone wants to know when Im going back for my masters. FI is just finishing up his masters next week!!! And I am almost dont paying my undergrad, and now we will have all his new student loans. I dont want to go back to school, and I REALLY dont want any more student loans to have to pay back.
    I basically just change the topic when it comes up. Getting pretty good at that lol! But I do wish they would just quit asking!
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    Yeah I would tell everyone harping on you (especially your H) exactly what you told us. 

    And yeah I agree with Mara, I would love to not have student loan debt.  Until H gets his professional engineers license (next October) and my entire salary can go towards my loans for a while we have this constant SL debt over us. It's no fun.

    If you don't have a legitimate reason to go back to school then don't.
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    I agree with mara, say what you said here. If you don't feel you need the degree and already have a great job that you love, and don't want to take the time to go to school, then that should be enough for them.

    I am a huge proponent of education, so normally I'd say go back for your BA because you never know where life will take you. If your company goes out of business or for whatever reason you are no longer there, it will probably be harder to find another job if you are up against others with a degree. However, I don't think you should go to college just to make others happy. You do it for yourself.

    Also, there are many kinds of grants and scholarships to look into so you don't have a lot of student loan debt.
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    Another option would be to just take it slow.  Don't necessarily become a full time student again.  Take a class a semester...do they offer night classes?

    Another payment option - even though your job doesn't require it - do they offer any type of tuition reimbursement option?

    I agree you should go back for yourself and not because other's are pressuring you; however, I also have to agree that it's good to have a contingency plan because things can change.

     

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    And I will say that when I was unemployed I seriously considered going back, because it made sense (a bad job market, no job, I might as well go back and get a degree to make myself more "hireable").  But luckily I was able to find a job soon after the wedding. 

    So I also struggle with what you said, Seshat, about getting laid off again. 
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    I'm in the same boat as you - I have a secure job that doesn't require a degree, and I have yet to finish mine.  My dad wanted me to finish school, just so that I could say that I had one.  What I had previously been trying to do is to take a class or two at a time that I could pay for out of pocket, and then eventually finish. (BTW - I am now 1 class away from my associates degree, but I cannot cut chemistry to save my life.)  It's been slow going, but one day, I'll finish.  

    I do agree w/ Sesh (and my dad) that you never know where your life will lead, so it's probably good to have an ace in the hole, although, if you don't need it right away, try to work towards it without going into debt.   
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    Also - I LOVE taking online classes.  That's something to consider, if you don't have the time/energy/ambition (like me) to actually go to class.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_serious-nugget-need-serious-advice?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:17Discussion:565fe1d3-e0fb-409e-ae43-2299d159a8f3Post:7fb31f8f-2454-438e-8491-37f8e6438d7b">Re: I are serious Nugget, I need serious advice</a>:
    [QUOTE]And I will say that when I was unemployed I seriously considered going back, because it made sense (a bad job market, no job, I might as well go back and get a degree to make myself more "hireable").  But luckily I was able to find a job soon after the wedding.  So I also struggle with what you said, Seshat, about getting laid off again. 
    Posted by NuggetBrain[/QUOTE]

    That would be my biggest reason for going back. Not for family, but so you are more "hireable" just in case because you never know what could happen. And like PP said, you don't have to do it all at once. Take night classes, online classes if possible.
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    ohwhynotohwhynot member
    First Comment
    edited December 2010
    What Seshat says. 

    It's not like you don't value education, though, just because pursuing a degree doesn't fit into your life right now.  That is not a fair accusation to make, and I hope you can defend yourself against that.  You are a grown woman and you get to decide whether, and how, to pursue a bachelor's degree.  It's a huge luxury to get a degree just for the sake of getting a degree.  Not that it's a bad thing, but it is a luxury. 

    PS.  Shenanigans, yes, but I have never seen you be an asshat.
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    What are you doing now? How are you using your Associate Degree? If you're doing graphic design, that BA will help you get your first few jobs, but then it's all about your portfolio. My education is the very last line on my resume because no one cares where I went to school or what degree I have. They want to see my book. I've never once been asked about my education, and I've gotten jobs requiring more education than I have. I think it depends on if you want to manage people vs. managing creative. If I wanted to run my own creative department, then I would go back to school. Otherwise, I'm fine managing creative content vs. creative people.
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    I do agree with PPs about having a degree to be more hireable. I think, too, it depends on what field you're in. With my job, I could get another job somewhere in the same field based on my experience, not my degree.

    If it's something you really really want to do, then do it. But if you're really not into it, then don't waste time worrying about it and maybe you could see if there are classes that could boost your experience/seminars that would be helpful and look good on a resume.
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    You are not alone, Nugget. I have the degrees I need, but I could make much more money working at a corporation than a non-profit. H mentions this often, but I value my sanity more than my paycheck. We live comfortably. 

    I also sometimes feel like I haven't reached my potential in life, but then that maybe I really don't want to because I see people I know at that station in life and they are so sad and stressed out all the time. Could I be a kick ass controller at a public company? Sure. Do I want to be? Never! If that makes me lazy, so be it.

    H's dad wants him to go back to get his Masters, but H doesn't want to. He sees no need. However, his industry is based way more on performance than education (software engineering) and he is already at the top of his pay grade. A Masters wouldn't be a good investment.

    If you are happy where you are and don't think you would be happier elsewhere or with more money, then don't do it. I have learned by working at non-profits that money is not everything where employment is concerned. The work/life balance and supportive environment WAY trump the money. 
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    I would think long and hard about your job now.  Is it relatively stable?  Is it something you could see yourself doing for the rest of your life (or at least long enough to rack enough experience that having a degree or not doesn't matter)?  How much money could you afford to put into school without going into debt?  Is it something where you could take a few credits a semester and a few in the summer and finish in 3 -4 years instead of 2, without going into huge amounts of SL debt?  Will having your Bachelor's degree increase your earning potential at the job you're at currently?

    Because I think the desire to go back to school (or at least the realization that it is a practical move) is there somewhere--since you expressed interest in doing it while you weren't working.

    If you can answer most of the above questions in a way to support not going back, then I'd say lay that allllll out to family and show them that not going back is actually a smarter move, FOR NOW.  Just tell them it's not something you're ruling out completely (because who knows what will happen?  You might decide in a year or two that you DO want to go back) but FOR NOW it's not a smart or practical move. 

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    raynesraynes member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2010
    I don't have much to add because everyone has offered some great advice.  Also, if the loans are what's holding you back and your Gma says your Gpa wants you to do it, then tell her that if he pays for it, you'll consider.

    ETA:  You wrote gpa in the past tense, so perhaps my comment is impossible.  In which case, sorry for being insensitive. 

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    It sounds to me that you'd be going back for the wrong reasons- to appease those around you rather than to pursue something you are really passionate about. 
     
     "Mom/Grandma, I know that you really want to be able to say I have this degree. However, I am proud of the work I do now. I'm happy. Isn't the point of going to school to then find a  job you love? I've done that.
     I don't need a Bacehlors to be proud of myself; I already am, and I know Grandpa would be too."
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    I'm an administrative assistant/event planner for a non-profit in MN.  It's about 50% AA, 50% event planning.  I am one of those "wierd" people who actually enjoys being an AA, and I ADORE event planning, so it's kind of my dream job right now.  Having a BA would not cause me to get a raise or anything, so not having one doesn't affect the position at all.  The company's been around since the 1960's and it's a smaller company, but I'm not worried at all about it suddenly shutting down or me losing my job (the position I'm in has been part of the company for a while now).  And yes, I could see myself doing this job for the next ten or twenty years, easy.  Not to mention the benefits are awesome, and so are the people.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_serious-nugget-need-serious-advice?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:17Discussion:565fe1d3-e0fb-409e-ae43-2299d159a8f3Post:0c8e0990-e8d8-494a-b55e-fd62e375e662">Re: I are serious Nugget, I need serious advice</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'm an administrative assistant/event planner for a non-profit in MN.  It's about 50% AA, 50% event planning.  I am one of those "wierd" people who actually enjoys being an AA, and I ADORE event planning, so it's kind of my dream job right now.  Having a BA would not cause me to get a raise or anything, so not having one doesn't affect the position at all.  The company's been around since the 1960's and it's a smaller company, but I'm not worried at all about it suddenly shutting down or me losing my job (the position I'm in has been part of the company for a while now).  And yes, I could see myself doing this job for the next ten or twenty years, easy.  Not to mention the benefits are awesome, and so are the people.
    Posted by NuggetBrain[/QUOTE]

    I really think you have your answer :)
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    Thanks guys, hearing other opinions on this has been very helpful. 
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_serious-nugget-need-serious-advice?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:17Discussion:565fe1d3-e0fb-409e-ae43-2299d159a8f3Post:0c8e0990-e8d8-494a-b55e-fd62e375e662">Re: I are serious Nugget, I need serious advice</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'm an administrative assistant/event planner for a non-profit in MN.  It's about 50% AA, 50% event planning.  I am one of those "wierd" people who actually enjoys being an AA, and I ADORE event planning, so it's kind of my dream job right now.  Having a BA would not cause me to get a raise or anything, so not having one doesn't affect the position at all.  The company's been around since the 1960's and it's a smaller company, but I'm not worried at all about it suddenly shutting down or me losing my job (the position I'm in has been part of the company for a while now).  And yes, I could see myself doing this job for the next ten or twenty years, easy.  Not to mention the benefits are awesome, and so are the people.
    Posted by NuggetBrain[/QUOTE]

    <div>here are AA's where I work that have been there for 20+ years because they really enjoy what they are doing. The are majorly respected for keeping the school going most of the time. I love them. Stay with what you are doing and if you want to take classes, do them one at a time. </div>
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    If you're happy doing this line of work and don't see the need in the field for a bachlor's I don't see that getting it would be a necessary step for you. Your resume and job experience can land you a similar job at another company should anything happen to the job you're in now.

    I'm having internal struggle related to going to get my masters. I can't really just go get an MBA at this stage as I don't have the proper undergrad courses, I don't see a purpose to getting my masters in Lit now that I'm all business like in my endeavors and the only other thing that appeals to me is going to get a law degree and working in my field, but on the legal side of Rx government pricing. Frankly, I'm not willing to take on the student loans for this. As much as jumping into another income bracket would be nice I can work my way up from where I am slowly and FI has lots of opportunity ahead given her experience and MBA. Hopefully one day we'll be out of debt - probably just in time to sent our future kids to college!

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    edited December 2010
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_serious-nugget-need-serious-advice?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:17Discussion:565fe1d3-e0fb-409e-ae43-2299d159a8f3Post:6944cc8e-c4c9-4d35-9130-a25f9361f9b9">Re: I are serious Nugget, I need serious advice</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: I are serious Nugget, I need serious advice : I really think you have your answer :)
    Posted by maratea[/QUOTE]

    I agree. I'll almost always say go back to school over not, but based on your answer I think that if you're really happy where you are and genuinely don't want/need to go back, then don't do so just because family is guilting you.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_serious-nugget-need-serious-advice?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:17Discussion:565fe1d3-e0fb-409e-ae43-2299d159a8f3Post:0c8e0990-e8d8-494a-b55e-fd62e375e662">Re: I are serious Nugget, I need serious advice</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'm an administrative assistant/event planner for a non-profit in MN.  It's about 50% AA, 50% event planning.  I am one of those "wierd" people who actually enjoys being an AA, and I ADORE event planning, so it's kind of my dream job right now.  Having a BA would not cause me to get a raise or anything, so not having one doesn't affect the position at all.  The company's been around since the 1960's and it's a smaller company, but I'm not worried at all about it suddenly shutting down or me losing my job (the position I'm in has been part of the company for a while now).  And yes, I could see myself doing this job for the next ten or twenty years, easy.  Not to mention the benefits are awesome, and so are the people.
    Posted by NuggetBrain[/QUOTE]

    With these answers, I re-refer you to this part of my previous post: If you can answer most of the above questions in a way to support not going back, then I'd say lay that allllll out to family and show them that not going back is actually a smarter move, FOR NOW.  Just tell them it's not something you're ruling out completely (because who knows what will happen?  You might decide in a year or two that you DO want to go back) but FOR NOW it's not a smart or practical move. 

    (I only emphasize the FOR NOW not because i'm dead set convinced you'll want to go back soon, but because I feel like that will be the easiest way to have your mom not cry and beg you to go to school.  But if that's too open ended and you think they'll continue to bug you, maybe replace the "for now" with "as long as I'm really happy at this job, doing what I'm doing")

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    I didn't read responses, so I may be repeating.

    I have two associates degrees.  One is in Office System Technology, one in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on Business and Language.

    I'm only ten classes away from my Bachelour's when I decide to go back, but I REALLY don't want to.  I HATE school!  I was there for almost 15 years.
    It's like, one day we went to kindergarten, and they never let us out...

    But, I have a crappy job.  I'd rather just dig around and find another job, but I recently discovered a scholarship that will pay for full tuition and books if I go back. I haven't found out if I get it yet, but there's not a lot of competition.  My job is crappy, but easy enough that I could do it with a full course load.

    I started typing to give you an answer, but the only thing I added were my own questions to myself.  Sorry. Good luck.

    CN: If you like your job and you don't need more education, keep on trucking.  If you're questioning what to do, get the rest of your education behind you now.  Going back sucks,
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    MrsMack10612MrsMack10612 member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Answer First Comment
    edited December 2010
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_snarky-brides_serious-nugget-need-serious-advice?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:17Discussion:565fe1d3-e0fb-409e-ae43-2299d159a8f3Post:0c8e0990-e8d8-494a-b55e-fd62e375e662">Re: I are serious Nugget, I need serious advice</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'm an administrative assistant/event planner for a non-profit in MN.  It's about 50% AA, 50% event planning.  I am one of those "wierd" people who actually enjoys being an AA, and I ADORE event planning, so it's kind of my dream job right now.  Having a BA would not cause me to get a raise or anything, so not having one doesn't affect the position at all.  The company's been around since the 1960's and it's a smaller company, but I'm not worried at all about it suddenly shutting down or me losing my job (the position I'm in has been part of the company for a while now).  And yes, I could see myself doing this job for the next ten or twenty years, easy.  Not to mention the benefits are awesome, and so are the people.
    Posted by NuggetBrain[/QUOTE]


    You're not the only one - I've been an AA (or some variant there of) for 17 years.  I love it and it's what I chose to be my career.  I also get involved in event planning, but my company has specific team for most of that - I'm usually their pinch hitter when they need extra hands.

    You're better off than I am in the education dept though - I went to business school and got my "Certificate in Executive Secretarial"...that and $2.50 will get me a cup of coffee.

    I still say look into finishing your degree as a contingency plan - but on your terms.  When you want, when you're ready, when you can afford.

    EDITED: For grammar

     

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    Going back to college after the traditional college time of your life is very difficult.  I went back to get an MBA five years after I did my undergrad and only got about 1/2 way through before I'd had enough of it.  It wasn't that the classes were hard, or inconvenient since one of FL's state universities offered a 23 month MBA program consisting of Monday nights and Saturday mornings, but I just felt so strongly that what I was learning would never benefit me that I couldn't get motivated to complete it.  I had already quit my formal job and was running my own company at that point so it's not like I could promote myself, and I always had my BS if worst came to worst and I had to fall back on something should my own business fail.

    Now that's seven years behind me and I have no desire to go back lol.

    If you think you'd enjoy the coursework though, and you can find a good school that offers either online or classes at times you could work it in, I'd recommend doing it, never hurts to have the degree, you'll feel great and you'll get the relatives off your back.

    Married in Vegas - June 2011


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    It's your life...not theirs. They need to get over it. If you are happy where you are and you don't need the additional education, then you shouldn't waste your time/energy/money doing it if you aren't 100% invested. 

    I'm really blunt with everyone...sooooo I'd probably just put it forth like that. You don't NEED a college education these days to have a good job. My husband is an example of this. My best friend just started his own company and he only has his associates degree. The piece of paper you get from graduating is just not as important anymore as it used to be. 
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    I agree that if you are happy where you are, and there is very low risk of you not having the job at any point, you don't need to go back right now. I'm in about the same position as you are. FI has been on me to go back and finish for a while. At this point, we're waiting until I can start to get half off of tuition (FI works at a university, so when he hits his 5 year mark, I will get 50% off... which is awesome).

    I am Assistant Manager at a retail store right now and have seen so many people just quit. With the job market the way it is at the moment, it's just not logical (unless you absolutely hate your job, which seems to be the opposite for you).

    I ditto the PP who suggested maybe online or part time classes if you feel as if you need to go to class. But don't feel as if you have to go out of guilt. Do what is best for you.
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    I am a little late to the party here but I have some things to add to the great advice you have already received.
    I don't think you should go back to school just to please someone else. Your heart won't be in it and you will likely not do as well as you would if it was fully your decision to go back.
    You said that you love your job. Not very many people can truly say that they love their job. I think that that is more important than education any day. FTR I do believe that education is important, but it has its place.
    If your passion lies in event planning and/or design you are probably better off to keep working and get some experience planning. If you ever did get laid off your experience as an event planner (trying to get another job as an event planner) will go a lot further than education will.
    Just be honest with your family and tell them how you feel.

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