It can be overwhelming for a non-traditional student to go back to school. How can you balance it all?
It can be scary and overwhelming for a non-traditional student going back to school after time away. Maybe you have a family now, so you’re not just worrying about yourself these days. Maybe you already have an income that supports you comfortably, and going back to school means making some significant sacrifices. Maybe you lost your job and going back to school is the only option to pursuing a new career path.
The University of Arkansas at Little Rock has several resources in place to help prospective non-traditional students grow into their new lifestyle at the university.
Here are three helpful things to keep in mind when trying to balance home, work and school:
1. Time Management
Sometimes, the most helpful way to be able to go to school, work, and have a life is all in timing and scheduling of classes. If you have a job already that requires classes be taken at specific times, talk to a UALR academic advisor in your department about the different options offered.
UALR also has certain night and online classes to accommodate the working student.
2. Ask for Help
We are here to help you! Wonder what scholarships you can get as a non-traditional student? Ask the Office of Financial Aid what your options are when it comes to financing your college plans. Money is listed as one of the main reasons people ages 26+ hesitate to go back to school. UALR can answer any questions you may have about easing the financial burden of receiving more education; don’t forget to also check our work/study program.
Other resources include Non-Traditional Student Programs, the Non-Traditional Student Organization, Peer Mentoring, Peer Tutoring, a chapter of the Alpha Sigma Lambda Honor Society which recognizes the achievements of non-traditional students and and organization supporting First Generation Students.
One of the most stressful decisions can be figuring out how to pay for childcare. The Arkansas Department of Human Services offers assistance for childcare for families who meet certain income and household criteria, including parents who are going back to school.
Another tough decision may be whom to leave your child with while you’re at school. No worries- there are several childcare facilities located not far from UALR or in the midtown area. DHS offers this handy checklist to take with you when you are researching a place for your child.