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Going back to school at age 35?
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amother




OP
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 10:37 am
I became a sahm about 10 years ago. I always imagined my 30s to be busy with pregnancy and taking care of infants and toddlers. Unfortunately due to fertility issues my youngest is in grade school and I’m thinking of doing something for myself. I’ve been told by quite a few people in the mental health field that I’d make an excellent therapist. But that means going back to school. Where do I begin? All I have is a high school diploma. I would enjoy the process of learning but maybe for a year not 4! I also can’t afford paying too much for this. I don’t drive so I’d prefer online classes. What should I look into? Do I need to have a masters to work as a social worker in say a clinic? Because I know that takes years and lots of money. Please help me figure this out.
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amother




Lemonchiffon
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 10:45 am
Went back to school, for my own reasons . Got an associates degree in an allied health field. I loved school and generally love what I do. I have scant/no student loans to contend with and a wonderful fulfilling career.
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amother




OP
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 11:01 am
amother Lemonchiffon wrote:
Went back to school, for my own reasons . Got an associates degree in an allied health field. I loved school and generally love what I do. I have scant/no student loans to contend with and a wonderful fulfilling career.

Can you give me more details? I’m so new to this what’s an associates degree? How are you with no student loans?
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amother




Latte
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 11:30 am
amother OP wrote:
I became a sahm about 10 years ago. I always imagined my 30s to be busy with pregnancy and taking care of infants and toddlers. Unfortunately due to fertility issues my youngest is in grade school and I’m thinking of doing something for myself. I’ve been told by quite a few people in the mental health field that I’d make an excellent therapist. But that means going back to school. Where do I begin? All I have is a high school diploma. I would enjoy the process of learning but maybe for a year not 4! I also can’t afford paying too much for this. I don’t drive so I’d prefer online classes. What should I look into? Do I need to have a masters to work as a social worker in say a clinic? Because I know that takes years and lots of money. Please help me figure this out.


Ugh, don't do social worker. It's the worst job for little pay. If you want to make the big bucks, you need to get a masters or doctorate and intern for YEARS.

If you only have a h.s. diploma, it's not for you. You can be a great "therapist" for your friends and children and do something else that you enjoy for a profession.

Look into boot camps if you want something for 1 year.

Good luck.
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amother




Amethyst
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 11:38 am
I am in a similar situation, and I am considering social work. I know it's a lot of work and little pay, but I'm very passionate about this field. I know it isn't a money business, but I want to do something I feel for and enjoy.
I got a BA a while ago; it took me about seven months. Social work school could be done in 16 months to 2 years, depending on the program. It is a lot of work, but doable if this is what you want.
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amother




OP
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 11:38 am
amother Latte wrote:
Ugh, don't do social worker. It's the worst job for little pay. If you want to make the big bucks, you need to get a masters or doctorate and intern for YEARS.

If you only have a h.s. diploma, it's not for you. You can be a great "therapist" for your friends and children and do something else that you enjoy for a profession.

Look into boot camps if you want something for 1 year.

Good luck.

What type of boot camps?
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amother




OP
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 11:40 am
amother Amethyst wrote:
I am in a similar situation, and I am considering social work. I know it's a lot of work and little pay, but I'm very passionate about this field. I know it isn't a money business, but I want to do something I feel for and enjoy.
I got a BA a while ago; it took me about seven months. Social work school could be done in 16 months to 2 years, depending on the program. It is a lot of work, but doable if this is what you want.

Did you do it online? Which school did you go through?
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amother




Amethyst
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 11:55 am
I did my BA online with Excelsior college. It was pretty easy.
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amother




OP
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 12:25 pm
amother Amethyst wrote:
I did my BA online with Excelsior college. It was pretty easy.

Did you get any student loans or grants to cover tuition?
Can I ask what field you went into?
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amother




Amethyst
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 12:30 pm
I applied for grants, but never actually used them...
I want to take a master's in social work, but I did a BA in Liberal arts, it was the easiest and fastest route.
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#BestBubby




 
 
 
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 12:40 pm
Someone asked "Dear Abby":

it's my lifelong dream to be a doctor. But I am 35. In 7 years I will be 42. Does it pay to train to be a doctor?

Dear Abby replied:

How old will you be in 7 years if you don't become a doctor?
‐---------‐-------

Go for it!
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amother




Stoneblue
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 1:44 pm
#BestBubby wrote:
Someone asked "Dear Abby":

it's my lifelong dream to be a doctor. But I am 35. In 7 years I will be 42. Does it pay to train to be a doctor?

Dear Abby replied:

How old will you be in 7 years if you don't become a doctor?
‐---------‐-------

Go for it!

This is great!
And very much agree!!
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amother




Oldlace
 

Post Sun, Nov 20 2022, 5:06 pm
I once saw an article discussing a certain dilemma and the person was told "the next five years will go by anyhow", similar to what Dear Abby said.

I waited til all my kids were married to try starting a Master's, and, mainly, I think, due to health issues, the first course I took, completely on-line, was way too much for me.

There are a lot of things you can learn on-line, like graphics, for example. I am hoping to do some of that ... I've also been getting some books on writing, maybe I will try that ...

You are young enough to do something, OP!

I would suggest you go to your local COPE or Jewish Family Service where they may have some kind of vocational testing and guidance to help you see where your talents may lie, and what fields might suit you.

Lots of wise women on here, who can maybe tell you about their own fields, but they don't know you well enough to know whether the field is a fit for you!
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amother




OP
 

Post Mon, Nov 21 2022, 1:21 pm
amother Oldlace wrote:
I once saw an article discussing a certain dilemma and the person was told "the next five years will go by anyhow", similar to what Dear Abby said.

I waited til all my kids were married to try starting a Master's, and, mainly, I think, due to health issues, the first course I took, completely on-line, was way too much for me.

There are a lot of things you can learn on-line, like graphics, for example. I am hoping to do some of that ... I've also been getting some books on writing, maybe I will try that ...

You are young enough to do something, OP!

I would suggest you go to your local COPE or Jewish Family Service where they may have some kind of vocational testing and guidance to help you see where your talents may lie, and what fields might suit you.

Lots of wise women on here, who can maybe tell you about their own fields, but they don't know you well enough to know whether the field is a fit for you!

Thanks I’d love to have someone to discuss my options with. Would anyone know where in Lakewood I can do that?
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amother




Coral
 

Post Mon, Nov 21 2022, 6:44 pm
Try PCS.
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yachnabobba




 
 
 
 

Post Mon, Nov 21 2022, 6:57 pm
amother OP wrote:
Can you give me more details? I’m so new to this what’s an associates degree? How are you with no student loans?

An associates degree is a two year degree. I Attended a local state school which is significantly cheaper.
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amother




Aconite
 

Post Mon, Nov 21 2022, 9:00 pm
Years ago I sat through a couple of back to back semesters in Touro. Got student grants through Financial aid. Was aiming for the Mental Health Counseling track. Took a bunch of physchology courses (was such fun) and the prerequisites (some were not so fun lol). I ended up putting my studies on the back burner and in the interim moved to Lakewood. Maybe with my seminary credits I might have an associates degree but I never transferred it yet. would love to continue as well. I know that they do classes now through Zoom. It just takes veeery long going the Touro route. Keep us updated whatever you decide. Hatzluche
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amother




Slategray
 

Post Mon, Nov 21 2022, 9:16 pm
I'm currently in school and I'm not so young but with a very different situation than yours. I'm in the thick of it so I probably would be speaking differently when I'm done but these are my thoughts now.

I would caution you to really plan well whatever you choose. I'm half way through with a couple more years to go. I chose a longer path because it was significantly cheaper but there have been consequences of that decision. Yes, you will get older regardless of what you choose but it is not easy. If you have a passion and dream for what you want to do that is one thing, but if you are not that motivated it's a different story.

You definitely should do something, I am not saying not to go back to school. Just research well and know your options. Can you get a job in a field you think you would enjoy to get more familiar with it before you start with school? Is there any other career options or different fields that use similar skills of therapists without the schooling?

The frum programs are amazing for this type of situation and you definitely should speak to them and find out your options. I don't know of any organization that helps you figure out the best career/schooling path but others may know of something like that. PCS has their own degree programs. I don't think they offer general guidance for degrees but I may be wrong.

ETA - do you have any seminary credits? Are you eligible for the Pell grant? You can also use the American opportunity credit for a $2,000 tax refund to reimburse you for expenses for up to 4 years, so up to $8,000 total.
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Kiwi13




 
 
 
 

Post Tue, Nov 22 2022, 1:56 am
I think the difference between going to school younger vs. older is the question of return on investment. If you can easily afford it, great, and Dear Abby's advice is solid. But if you're taking on loans that will take longer to repay, or you're going into a field that requires considerable front loading (money, time, etc. that's very intensive at the start, such as fields with unpaid or low paid internships before or even after graduation), it's definitely responsible to consider how much you'll be able to recoup.

If it's for personal fulfillment and you can pull it off, awesome. But also keep in mind that traditional degrees, and the weight they carry, aren't what they used to be, and there are many ways to be successful in similar paths.

OP, I assume this is what you meant?

In any case, if you're motivated and going strong, 35 isn't too old. But it does carry a slightly lower ROI in some paths. For example, if you want a doctorate in philosophy, maybe think twice (the path to tenure in academia is fierce). But many other fields are totally doable.

Just my thoughts.
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yc




 
 
 
 

Post Tue, Nov 22 2022, 3:35 am
I know a number of women who did this and I say - go for it!
you have many productive years ahead of you I'yh. it would be a shame to not to fulfill your dreams and use your talents. good luck!
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