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Considering Going Back to School? Best Schools for Mature Students

Considering Going Back to School? Best Schools for Mature Students

If you’re considering going back to school after several years of being out of classes, there are many options to choose from. No matter what type of degree you’re looking for, or the flexibility you need, these are considered to be the best schools for mature students.

1. Excelsior College

    Image via Excelsiorcollege.edu

    At Excelsior College, whose head quarters are in Albany, New York, you have a variety of programs to choose from, including Health Sciences, Cyber Technology, and Business. Whether you’re considering a certificate program or a Master’s degree, Excelsior has the flexibility you need.

    2. Charter Oak State College

      Image via Wikimedia 

      Whether you live in Connecticut or you simply want the best degree at the best prices, consider Charter Oak State College. Here you can pursue Early Childhood certification or Bachelor of Arts in your chosen field, among other degree options.

      3. Maryville University

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        With a variety of great class options, such as a Master of Science in Nursing, you’ll find that Maryville University offers what you need. You can go back to school, even while you’re working, with classes that will fit your schedule.

        4. SUNY Empire State College

          Image via Old.Suny.Edu

          SUNY Empire State College offers an online Master of Business Administration in Global Leadership that can help you pursue your dreams in any field. The online Master of Arts in Learning and Emerging Technologies is a great option for those going into the education field.

          5. American Public University System

            Image via Wikipedia

            Offering small class sizes, even for their online classes, American Public University System allows students to get to know their instructors. Get an Associates in Database Application Development or even a certification in E-commerce here.

            6. DeVry University

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              At DeVry, you’ll be working with a number of other mature students in programs that give you not only the textbook skills, but also the real-world education you need. The school offers some of the most extensive online programs around, with over 40 career field options.

              7. Cardinal Stritch University

                Image via aacn.nche.edu

                Getting an undergraduate or graduate degree is easy at Cardinal Stritch University. Accelerated programs, such as a Bachelor of Science in Management, are ideal for mature students, since you’ll be able to get your degree faster than traditionally expected.

                8. University of Great Falls

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                  Online degrees such as Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Associates in Criminal Justice are available through the University of Great Falls distance learning program. These programs are eligible for grants, scholarships, and more.

                  9. Immaculata University

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                    At Immaculata University, pursuing degrees such as Music Therapy and Educational Leadership allow you to change your career. The value-oriented school offers a unique option for adults looking to further their knowledge.

                    10. Belmont Abbey College

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                      Get the personal touch at Belmont Abbey College. You’ll find friendly professors and helpful classmates in programs such as an Actuarial Science concentration or a Bachelor’s Degree in Education. This school offers flexibility to those who want to take classes online and in the classroom.

                      11. Northeastern Illinois University

                        Image via neiu.edu

                        Get a local education from anywhere through Northeastern Illinois University. You can pursue a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies, or Bachelor of Arts or Science degree with a focus in your chosen field.

                        12. Madonna University

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                          Madonna University helps you focus on your success. With options that allow you to take classes when you’re available, you can get a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies or a Masters in Liberal Studies and Leadership.

                          13. Utah Valley University

                          Image via Flickr by cruxandgage

                          When you want to get a great education and take all of your classes, or even the majority of them, online consider Utah Valley University. You’ll work with Professors who not only know their field but have also worked in it. You’ll find degrees such as Writing Studies and Forensic Science.

                          14. Dunwoody College of Technology

                            Image via Dunwoody.edu

                            Whether you need an apprenticeship, such as an Automotive Technician Apprenticeship, or you’re considering a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Management, Dunwoody College of Technology can help. At Dunwoody, you can even customize your training, allowing you to take classes when and where you want.

                            15. Bay Path College

                              Image via Wikipedia

                              If you want to take classes in a classroom setting, but don’t have time for traditional school days, the One Day a Week schedule at Bay Path College is beneficial. Degrees through this school include Communications and Information Management and Physician Assistant Studies.

                              As you can see, getting an online education is available to anyone, anywhere in the country. All you need to do is take the next step to further your knowledge.

                              Featured photo credit: CollegeDegrees360 via flickr.com

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                              Last Updated on November 5, 2020

                              Why You Have the Fear of Failure (And How to Overcome It)

                              Why You Have the Fear of Failure (And How to Overcome It)

                              Nobody enjoys failing. Fear of failure can be so strong that avoiding failure eclipses the motivation to succeed. Insecurity about doing things incorrectly causes many people to unconsciously sabotage their chances for success.

                              Fear is part of human nature. As an entrepreneur, I faced this same fear. My ego and identity became intertwined with my work, and when things didn’t go as planned, I completely shut down. I overcame this unhealthy relationship with fear, and I believe that you can, too.

                              Together we’ll examine how you can use failure to your advantage instead of letting it run your life. We’ll also look at how to overcome fear of failure so that you can enjoy success in your work and life.

                              What Is Fear of Failure?

                              If you are afraid of failure, it will cause you to avoid potentially harmful situations.

                              Fear of failure keeps you from trying, creates self-doubt, stalls progress, and may lead you to go against your morals.

                              What causes a fear of failure? Here are the main reasons why fear of failing exists:

                              Patterns From Childhood

                              Hyper-critical adults cause children to internalize damaging mindsets.[1] They establish ultimatums and fear-based rules. This causes children to feel the constant need to ask for permission and reassurance. They carry this need for validation into adulthood.

                              Perfectionism

                              Perfectionism is often at the root of a fear of failure.[2] For perfectionists, failure is so terrible and humiliating that they don’t try. Stepping outside your comfort zone becomes terrifying.

                              Over-Personalization

                              The ego may lead us to over-identify with failures. It’s hard to look beyond failure at things like the quality of the effort, extenuating circumstances, or growth opportunities.[3]

                              False Self-Confidence

                              People with true confidence know they won’t always succeed. A person with fragile self-confidence avoids risks. They’d rather play it safe than try something new.[4]

                              How the Fear of Failure Holds You Back

                              Unhealthy Organization Culture

                              Too many organizations today have cultures of perfection: a set of organizational beliefs that any failure is unacceptable. Only pure, untainted success will do.

                              Imagine the stress and terror in an organization like that. The constant covering up of the smallest blemishes. The wild finger-pointing as everyone tries to shift the blame for the inevitable messes onto someone else. The lying, cheating, falsification of data, and hiding of problems—until they become crises that defy being hidden any longer.

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                              Miss out on Valuable Opportunities

                              If some people fail to reach a complete answer because of the lure of some early success, many more fail because of their ego-driven commitment to what worked in the past. You often see this with senior people, especially those who made their names by introducing some critical change years ago.

                              They shy away from further innovation, afraid that this time they might fail, diminishing the luster they try to keep around their names from past triumph.

                              Besides, they reason, the success of something new might even prove that those achievements they made in the past weren’t so great after all. Why take the risk when you can hang on to your reputation by doing nothing?

                              Such people are so deeply invested in their egos and the glories of their past that they prefer to set aside opportunities for future glory rather than risk even the possibility of failure.

                              High Achievers Become Losers

                              Every talent contains an opposite that sometimes turns it into a problem. Successful people like to win and achieve high standards. This can make them so terrified of failure that it ruins their lives. When a positive trait, like achievement, becomes too strong in someone’s life, it’s on the way to becoming a major obstacle.

                              Achievement is a powerful value for many successful people. They’ve built their lives on it. They achieve at everything they do: school, college, sports, the arts, hobbies, work. Each fresh achievement adds to the power of the value in their lives.

                              Gradually, failure becomes unthinkable. Maybe they’ve never failed yet in anything that they’ve done, so they have no experience of rising above it. Failure becomes the supreme nightmare: a frightful horror they must avoid at any cost.

                              The simplest way to do this is never to take a risk, stick rigidly to what you know you can do, protect yourself, work the longest hours, double and triple check everything, and be the most conscientious and conservative person in the universe.

                              If constant hard work, diligence, brutal working schedules and harrying subordinates won’t ward off the possibility of failing, use every other possible means to to keep it away. Falsify numbers, hide anything negative, conceal errors, avoid customer feedback, constantly shift the blame for errors onto anyone too weak to fight back.

                              Loss of Creativity

                              Over-achievers destroy their own peace of mind and the lives of those who work for them. People too attached to “goodness” and morality become self-righteous bigots. Those whose values for building close relationships become unbalanced slide into smothering their friends and family with constant expressions of affection and demands for love in return.

                              Everyone likes to succeed. The problem comes when fear of failure is dominant, when you can no longer accept the inevitability of making mistakes, nor recognize the importance of trial and error in finding the most creative solution.

                              The more creative you are, the more errors you are going to make. Deciding to avoid the errors will destroy your creativity, too.

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                              Balance counts more than you think. Some tartness must season the sweetest dish. A little selfishness is valuable even in the most caring person. And a little failure is essential to preserve everyone’s perspective on success.

                              We hear a lot about being positive. Maybe we also need to recognize that the negative parts of our lives and experience have just as important a role to play in finding success, in work, and in life.

                              How to Overcome Fear of Failure (Step-by-Step)

                              1. Figure out Where the Fear Comes From

                              Ask yourself what the root cause of your negative belief could be.[5] When you look at the four main causes for a fear of failure, which ones resonate with you?

                              Write down where you think the fear comes from, and try to understand it as an outsider.

                              If it helps, imagine you’re trying to help one of your best friends. Perhaps your fear stems from something that happened in your childhood, or a deep-seated insecurity.

                              Naming the source of the fear takes away some of its power.

                              2. Reframe Beliefs About Your Goal

                              Having an all or nothing mentality leaves you with nothing sometimes. Have a clear vision for what you’d like to accomplish but include learning something new in your goal.

                              If you always aim for improvement and learning, you are much less likely to fail.[6]

                              At Pixar, people are actually encouraged to “fail early and fail fast.”[7] They encourage experimentation and innovation so that they can stay on the cutting edge. That mindset involves failure, but as long as they achieve their vision of telling great stories, all the stumbling blocks are just opportunities to grow.

                              3. Learn to Think Positive

                              In many cases, you believe what you tell yourself. Your internal dialogue affects how you react and behave.

                              Our society is obsessed with success, but it’s important to recognize that even the most successful people encounter failure.

                              Walt Disney was once fired from a newspaper because they thought he lacked creativity. He went on to found an animation studio that failed. He never gave up, and now Disney is a household name.

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                              Steve Jobs was also once fired from Apple before returning as the face of the company for many years. [8]

                              If Disney and Jobs had believed the negative feedback, they wouldn’t have made it.

                              It’s up to you to notice your negative self talk and identify triggers[9]. Replace negative thoughts with positive facts about yourself and the situation. You’ll be able to create a new mental scripts that you can reach for when you feel negativity creeping in. The voice inside your head has a great effect on what you do.

                              How To Be A Positive Thinker: Positivity Exercises, Affirmations, & Quotes

                                4. Visualize all Potential Outcomes

                                Uncertainty about what will happen next is terrifying. Take time to visualize the possible outcomes of your decision. Think about the best and worst-case scenarios. You’ll feel better if you’ve already had a chance to mentally prepare for what could happen.

                                Fear of the unknown might keep you from taking a new job. Weigh the pros and cons, and imagine potential successes and failures in making such a life-altering decision. Knowing how things could turn out might help you get unstuck.

                                5. Look at the Worst-Case Scenario

                                There are times when the worst case could be absolutely devastating. In many cases, if something bad happens, it won’t be the end of the world.

                                It’s important to define how bad the worst case scenario is in the grand scheme of your life. Sometimes, we give situations more power than they deserve. In most cases, a failure is not permanent.

                                For example, when you start a new business, it’s bound to be a learning experience. You’ll make decisions that don’t pan out, but often that discomfort is temporary. You can change your strategy and rebound. Even in the worst case scenario, if the perceived failure led to the end of that business, it might be the launching point for something new.

                                6. Have a Backup Plan

                                It never hurts to have a backup plan. The last thing you want to do is scramble for a solution when the worst has happened. The old adage is solid wisdom:

                                “Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.”

                                Having a backup plan gives you more confidence to move forward and take calculated risks.

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                                Perhaps you’ve applied for a grant to fund an initiative at work. In the worst-case scenario, if you don’t get the grant, are there other ways you could get the funds?

                                There are usually multiple ways to tackle a problem, so having a backup is a great way to reduce anxiety about possible failure.

                                7. Learn From Whatever Happens

                                Things may not go the way you planned, but that doesn’t automatically mean you’ve failed. Learn from whatever arises.[10] Even a less than ideal situation can be a great opportunity to make changes and grow.

                                “Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn.”

                                Dig deep enough, and you’re bound to find the silver lining. When you’ve learned that “failure” is an opportunity for growth instead of a death sentence, you conquer the fear of failure.

                                For more tips on how to overcome fear of failure, check out the video below:

                                Final Thoughts

                                To overcome fear of failure, we can start by figuring out where it comes from and reframing the way we feel about failure. When failure is a chance for growth, and you’ve looked at all possible outcomes, it’s easier to overcome fear.

                                Stay positive, have a backup plan, and learn from whatever happens. Your failures will be sources of education and inspiration rather than humiliation.

                                “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” -Thomas A. Edison

                                Failures can be blessings in disguise. Go boldly in the direction of your dreams and long-term goals.

                                More Tips for Conquering Fear

                                Featured photo credit: Patrick Hendry via unsplash.com

                                Reference

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