Anyone else started school around 33 years old? I hope I'm not alone.

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by mike4554, Dec 21, 2014.

  1. mike4554 macrumors newbie

    Dec 20, 2014
    It's hard pouring my heart out to Internet strangers.
    But I feel I have no choice. I need some tough love

    I kick myself for not listening to my mom about going to college right after high school.
    If I could go back in time I would slap some sense into my younger self.
    I'm still researching on what I want to do for the rest of my life. To give you a brief overview of what I've done. Been mostly dead end warehouse jobs and driver jobs.

    I have a 21 month old son and want him to grow up good. Meaning I never want him to step into a homeless shelter with me. If that ever happens I would break down crying. I'm a grown ass man by the way.

    It's embarrassing to apply to these warehouse jobs and other entry level jobs that lead to nowhere with high school graduates in the same room as me.

    I've actually got a friend I'm talking to. He's training to be a electrician apprentice.

    Also I just completed a semester part-time at the community college. Now I just signed up for the next semester that will be starting January 12, 2015. I like the aspect of community college but I hate the time it will take. To graduate from the community college then transferring my credits to a university. Is there something that can be done quicker which would lead to a more fulfilling high paying job?

    I'm reallly looking for solid advice. I want to move away from warehouse jobs as soon as possible.

    I do have varying interests in other fields, I like I.T. a lot. I've helped family and friends with computer issues. Every employer wants solid experience which I don't have. I don't have any certifications. I do like Accounting and also the prospects of being an electrician.

    Damn! I wish I knew the ceo/owner of a company.

    So I'm wondering if any of you have been into a similar position as myself and how did you overcome it? I'm listening......
  2. Ulenspiegel macrumors 68030


    Nov 8, 2014
    Land of Flanders and Elsewhere
    I have not been in this situation and I can not give you any sound advice, but I would like to express my sincere appreciation for your decision, your strength and sense of responsibilty for your kid! #
    It is never late!
  3. Pjrufus macrumors 6502

    Sep 20, 2014
  4. Big-TDI-Guy macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2007
    Mike - depending on where you live - try looking for a hacker space / maker space. These can be great places to pick up technical skills, and allow you to network with people in these fields. Many of them are not for profit, and offer basic classes - not enough to give you any job qualifications - but a great sampler of what lies ahead to help you make that choice.

    Learning gets harder as your brain ages, so it's going to be frusturating if you try to compare the ease which you learned things as a child to now. Fight through it, be persistant, no matter how difficult it may be.
  5. palmerc2 macrumors 68000


    Feb 29, 2008
    Los Angeles
    Don't feel bad, I never went to college & don't plan on it. Well, not true, I went for 1 semester and then left. I personally feel college is too cookie cutter and makes people only think one way, which 99% of the time is working for someone else and snag the "dream career". I have a serious problem working to achieve someone else's dream while getting crap pay and an unfulfilling life, only to hope to retire by 65 then you're too old to do the things you wished you had done when you were younger.

    I am pursuing 2 entrepreneurship endeavors, so a college education is not the only path to success.

    I'd strongly recommend reading books on entrepreneurship, it might inspire you to start something yourself. As silly as it may sound, watch the show Shark Tank....the investors offer so much insight it's amazing.

    90% of success is being able to lead people, so my last recommendation is reading the book How To Win Friends and Influence People. So much valuable insight there as well.

    Might not be the answer you're looking for, but good luck..
  6. monokakata macrumors 68000


    May 8, 2008
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    It might help you to know that when I was professor at a 4 year state school, all my colleagues and I understood that older students are likely to be right up there with the best college-age students.

    Having had a life and seen a thing or two, and having had to work for a living -- these give older students a really valuable perspective.

    None of this helps you make a choice, but you should proceed with the understanding that a lot of your professors are going to value what you bring to the classroom.
  7. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    A heartfelt and refund amen to this excellent post; the advice is worth heeding.

    As someone who is a former academic, and who taught a lot of 'second-chance' - i.e. mature students, in my time, at university, I couldn't agree more.

    Nobody undertakes a degree in their 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, without being hugely motivated, and having made this decision to study for themselves (rather than being pushed into it by parents, or to please parental ambitions) and this helps in a classroom situation.

    Moreover, as monokakata has already pointed out, your life experiences will mean that you will approach the prescribed texts with a critically analytical eye, the eye of someone who has lived a bit, and worked for a living and can bring the sum of those experiences to a classroom situation.

    As a former teacher, I can say that I loved and relished the challenge of teaching older students, and greatly valued their input. Indeed, the first time I taught a class of mature students, I was the youngest person present in the room, and my task was to earn their respect, (and teach them to have confidence in themselves as students and in preparing essays and term papers) and not assume that this was a given, as they all had rich and varied life experiences which they brought to discussions, debates and their essays.

    Moreover, I will add that my mom returned to college in her 40s, while still holding down a job, and also raising my brothers and I, and studied for a degree at night for several years. Obtaining that degree gave her the confidence to go for promotion when her boss died some years later, and she was offered his job. So, go for it, and the very best of luck with it.
  8. juanm macrumors 65816


    May 1, 2006
    Fury 161
    I'm pretty much the same age, and I couldn't got to college for different reasons, but I'm pretty much in the same boat. In my opinion the hardest part for you -and me- will be the first six months, going back to school after all this time, getting the first -perhaps disappointing- grades... Like Monokakata said, we have an invaluable advantage, on the other side: we know what we want, and we intend to get it, and we know a thing or two about life. You can draw from your experience to help you define precise goals, whereas the typical uni student is often there because he has to.

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