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Posted by on Sep 17, 2015 in Blog, Education & Development |

Career Change Alternatives To Grad School

Many adults find themselves in the position of wanting a career change. But with the costs and time commitment of a graduate degree, it can be challenging to get the education you need to make a vocational switch. Here are some options on how to educate yourself for a new career, without having to get an entirely new university degree.

Vocational Schools

Vocational schools are one of the best options for students who want to switch careers, because the programs at vocational schools are geared towards preparing their students for a particular career. While many students choose to enter a vocational school directly after high school, this can also be a great degree alternative for older adults who want to focus on a specific trade. And the programs are often shorter (and thus, less costly) than the traditional degree program.

Whether you would rather do something more hands-on or more technical, there are many online and regional options for choosing a vocational or trade school. To find the most viable vocational school, look for a program that includes career guidance and help with job placement after the program.

For more information, contact a vocational school in your area, such as the New Mexico Institute of Dental Assisting.

University Extension Programs

Another option is to try an extension program for adults who work full-time. You can complete a certificate program by taking night classes every week. Some extension programs are designed to let you explore courses at your leisure, while the certificate programs are often more structured. Each university has its own requirements for students to enter their continuing education programs, but usually these are less stringent than their 2- and 4-year degree programs.

Online Schools

Finally, you should consider attending an online school that caters to one specific need in the workforce. For instance, there are many programs cropping up related to web development, user interaction design, and graphic design. The benefit of these programs is that you can work from anywhere and study at your own pace, but you’ll need to be careful about verifying the school’s reputation. Be sure to compare the curriculum and the skills learned with other similar programs.

Each of the ideas mentioned above can be great alternatives to graduate school if you’re looking for a quick and affordable way to change your career. Consider that there are both in-person and online options for many of these educational programs, so your horizons are wide open for choosing a professional development program that suits your interests.

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