Going Back to College!

 Digital College Icon for Lee Towle Designs 

I have decided to go back to school! I'm pursuing a Bachelor's in Business Administration with a Concentration in Marketing from my alma mater, who now offers Bachelor's degrees online and doesn't charge a different rate for out-of-state vs. in-state.  I'm so excited!

I've been contemplating seeking a Bachelor's Degree for a while. I already have an Associates in Business Administration and an Associates in Graphic Design. I use both degrees in my current job and love it.

So why go back? There are a few reasons. 

I work at a financial firm here in Sarasota, FL. I love what I do, which is Marketing, Web Designer, and Graphic Designer, but was asked to look into going for a CFP or some other financial designation. While finance is not my thing, I figured I would look into as it would make me better at my current job. Problem: the companies that offer these designations require a Bachelor's Degree. When I inquired if the two Associates degrees could be counted towards this requirement, I was told flat out NO. The companies have a right to turn me down, so I've got nothing against them, but when did an Associates degree become worthless? 

While I have no plans to leave my job, this got me to wondering what would happen if I left or was fired? How does only having Associates degrees affect me in the job market? I started looking at job ads, and most want a Bachelor's degree in my field. Which makes no sense, I've spoken with Headhunters (who have called me after seeing my work to offer me a job) who say having a great portfolio will out-weight the lack of education. 

Lack of education? Again, when did Associates degrees become lack of education? 

So I started looking around at online schools. Turns out Husson College in Bangor, ME is now Husson University. They offer online degrees, and I can take 1 or 2 classes every seven weeks. Taking two classes a semester is beyond my budget, but I can afford to take one class every seven weeks. Since I'm not in any rush, I can take classes as I have the time or can afford it.

I've already completed Business Ethics and International Business. I learned a great deal from each of these classes. In fact, after completing International Business, I had a great conversation with a client that I would not have understood or been able to engage in before this class. I'm looking forward to English Comp II next semester. I'm looking forward to Social Media Marketing class as I can put that information to use right away. 

For those reading this who are debating between Associate's vs. Bachelor's: I've done well with the two Associates for years. I don't mean to discourage anyone from pursuing a degree in any form. If you can't afford a Bachelor's, by all means, go for the Associates as some education is better than none, with the intent to go for a Bachelor's at a later date. Depending on which field you are interested in, an Associate's may be all that you need. In my case, an Associate's is perfectly fine for Graphic Design. I've chosen to specialize in a specific niche, Finance, which has the higher education requirement. The job ads I see requiring the Bachelor's Degree for a Graphic Design job are usually companies that specialize in other things but need an in-house Graphic Designer and don't truly understand the educational requirements, which is basically what the Headhunters were saying.