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Will it help my family long term if I return to school for an advanced degree?

Question:

Dear Donna,

I’m a 45-year-old nurse, and after 15 years as an ADN, I’m considering returning to school. The issue is I’m a caregiver at home for my husband who suffered a stroke. The problem: time management issues. I truly wonder whether it will be worthwhile to quit my job and return to school full time while taking care of my husband and our 12-year-old daughter. Will I recuperate financially with a master’s degree after being out of the workforce for three years? I tried to work full time, care for my family and return to school and failed miserably — I felt like a tired human octopus. Your opinion means a lot. We could tighten our belts and make it financially.

Debbie

Dear Donna replies:

Dear Debbie,

The way I see it, furthering your education is an investment in yourself, your future and your family’s future because you are apparently the main source of support. Higher education is becoming the standard in nursing (and the entire professional world), and without an advanced degree your opportunities and earning potential will be very limited in the future.

I understand you have your hands more than full, but getting back to school can energize you in many ways. Read “Go Back to School and Change Your
Life” (www.Nurse.com/Cardillo/BacktoSchool) and “How to Get Back to School” (www.dcardillo.com/articles/gobacktoschool.html). Also, scholarship money is available and sometimes it can include living expenses. Read “Master the Scholarship Game” (www.dcardillo.com/articles/scholargame.html).

When I went back to graduate school, I also was the sole supporter of my family and caregiver for my husband, who is disabled. It was a struggle, but I believed in the long run it would pay off for us, which it has and then some.

Best wishes,
Donna

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By | 2011-06-03T00:00:00-04:00 June 3rd, 2011|Categories: Blogs, Nursing Careers and Jobs|0 Comments

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