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Resources for Working Parents Going Back to School

Wes Creel / Abound: Grad School

If you’re a working parent thinking about going back to school, you may have some very understandable concerns. Maybe you’re not sure how to pay for the courses or you need to find someone to take care of the kids while you’re at school. Maybe you wonder how you’ll find the time to do your assignments and earn enough to pay the bills.

Whatever your concerns are, you’re not alone! There are numerous opportunities for working parents to receive unique scholarships and access to child care programs. Plus, we want you to be aware of all the resources at your disposal for being an effective and engaged student.

Utilizing these resources can help make things a little easier while you’re completing your college education and parenting at the same time.

Financial Aid

Going back to school can seem daunting, even just for the cost. There are four options to help you get the money you need to finish your degree: grants, scholarships, federal aid, and loans.

The best types of financial aid for working parents are grants and scholarships. Both of these options provide money that doesn’t need to be paid back. There are also loans and other ways to help pay for college. This is a broad subject with a good deal to learn. That’s why we’ve dedicated several articles to financial aid. Be sure to do your homework and use up every opportunity available to you. It’s there for you to use!

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Support Networks

One of the most important resources for going back to school as a working parent is your support network. This might include your family, spouse, siblings, friends, co-workers, school counselors, or advisors. Basically, anyone who supports you in your desire to go back to school should be considered a part of your support network. The more people in your support network, the more love, support, and help you’ll receive while going back to school.

Be sure to let your support network know that you might need their help, and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Your support network is there to support you and make sure that you can do everything you need to do to earn your degree.

Child Care

There are simply not enough hours in the day to work, go to school, and care full-time for children. So now that you’ve found a way to pay for your school, what happens to your children while you’re in class?

You’re not alone. A 2017 report from the Institute of Women’s Policy Research has shown that  26 percent or 4.8 million of the American college population go back to school while caring for dependent children. This is why affordable child care programs are so important to working mothers who go back to school.

There are a number of resources and programs that offer affordable child care to parents going back to school. There are subsidies, on-campus daycare programs, and afterschool programs funded by the government.

Time Management Tools

Time management is an important skill to learn when you’re balancing a job, child care, and school.

Getting everything done can be a major source of stress for working moms. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. We all need help sometimes.

Time management tools such as digital calendars, to do lists, and apps that remind you to spend minimal time on social media can be very helpful when you’re juggling so many things.

Academic Resources

All colleges offer students academic resources. Those resources are there to help you out—take advantage of them! You might find that your college offers free tutoring, a writing center where you can get help on papers, a library to rent books, professor’s office hours, and much more.

Once you’ve chosen your program, find out what resources are at your disposal and utilize them as much as possible. Those academic resources are there to help you get your degree. Your professors and the school you attend want you to succeed.

Our job at Abound is to vet schools for adult students. Before we add a school to our list, we make sure that they offer resources that will be beneficial to adult students, such as child care, flexible class schedules, and financial aid. Good luck in your search!

More About Abound: We’re here to help. Abound: Grad School narrows down your options and gets you in touch with schools that we can confirm are Accessible, Affordable, Accelerated, and Advanced. Take a look at the schools we trust and find the program that works for you.

 

More Helpful Guides:

7 Tips to Help You Balance School and Work

5 Tips for Online Students from an Online Professor

Free Money: Go Back to School on Your Employer’s Dime

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