Monday, December 22, 2014

Four Signs You Need to Go Back to School

Heading back to school is always a tough choice to make, especially since we've been told by society that education is something you do once, then never go back to. But learning is really a lifelong journey, and sometimes education is necessary. It's particularly relevant in today's job market, where hundreds of candidates apply for a single position. You need to stand out, and taking a year off to do a post-grad may give you that advantage. Here's a few other reasons why you may need to head back into the world of post-secondary education, and take a look at graduate programs in Toronto.

1) You've spent a year or more job hunting
It's to be expected in today's market that finding a real job will take some time and effort. But, if it's been a year or longer, you may need to take a serious look at what you're missing, and get some education while your skills are still relevant. You'll want to avoid a “resume gap,” for one thing, where it appears as though you've been doing nothing for too long, and a year or so of schooling is a way to avoid that. And when you do go back, at the very least, you'll get to stop handing resumes out for awhile.

2) The work you're finding isn't adequate, and doesn't show signs of changing
This is a bit more difficult to pin down, but it's a situation I personally experienced: Maybe you have been finding work, but it's either contract, or seasonal, or just not the work you really want to be doing. Of course, climbing the corporate ladder takes time, and you won't automatically have your dream job right out of the gate, but if the work you've found doesn't seem like it will lead to what you want, it may be time for a change.

3) The jobs you're applying for almost, but not quite fits your skills
An example of this: There's a lot of journalism students who attempt, post-graduation, to go into public relations. There's a lot of parallels between the two fields, but applicants who have actually studied public relations inevitably have the advantage when applying, since they're a better fit. So, if you're a journalism graduate looking to get into the field, a year-long PR post-grad can give you that last push you need to qualify for that position.

4) Your career has changed in ways your education didn't cover
This applies even if you're in a job you like, and is particularly important if you're working in a technology-related sector. Even if you're happy with the job you have, it may even be necessary to keep up to date. Fortunately, between night school and distance learning, you won't have to quit your job to accomplish this. Not only do things advance, but they advance at an accelerated rate, meaning if your education is a couple years old, there may already be changes in your field you're not aware of. Between social media, new hardware, and new tech, it pays to stay relevant, making a year or so of schooling a solid investment in your future.

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