Are degrees still worth it?

October 5, 2012

For single working moms, taking the time and making the monumental effort to get back into the classroom could seem like a worthless endeavor. They've gotten by fine for years without an advanced degree, why start down that path now?

The choice for many lies in a sense of personal achievement, but more than that is the underlying inherent value of a college education. More than just a piece of paper, the experiences and connections forged at school create openings to jobs that were previously inaccessible, either due to a lack of skills or personal relationships. The culmination of these factors is that any mom with a college scholarship can find monetary worth going back to school.

Civic mindedness
Single working mothers face greater challenges in going back to school than nearly any other demographic group. This path shows personal perseverance, but it also puts these women in line to obtain a higher level of public conscience - caring about the community as well. Seeing as mothers are tuned to care about their kids, sometimes more than themselves, it makes sense that these educational programs would put them in a mindset to be more aware and outgoing about public campaigns.

As an example to her kids, a mom should be knowledgeable about the different facets of the world and active in the community. Taking an interest in politics and world governments goes hand in hand with college education, because the people and classes encountered are guaranteed to broaden horizons.

The payout
Some people have said that having a college degree makes no difference in the kind of work and the amount of money a person can earn, but that is simply not the case. A study by Payscale showed that people with bachelor's degrees made twice as much as those with only a high school diploma. What's more, the number of unskilled jobs has dropped drastically since the recession began in 2007, making employment much harder for those without a degree.

In a few years, it may be that it is impossible to find good work without getting a college education first. As the job market gets more competitive, it's important for moms to pursue single mother scholarships and earn better credentials before sustaining a family alone becomes untenable.

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