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Life can be hectic. Between work, family and day-to-day tasks, it can easily feel like there aren't enough hours in the day. You'd love to go back to school to pursue a college degree (it would really help you reach the next level at work), but how can you even consider adding it to your schedule? Learn from those who have gone before you, of course.
When Michael Constantine started pursuing his MBA at Grantham University, he was on the road up to 30 weeks a year while traveling between 19 different states for his job as a corporate trainer. He also had a wife and two young children at home. If anyone could understand not having enough time in the day, it was him. And yet, Constantine was able to successfully complete his degree and was even selected as the class speaker for Commencement in 2011. Intrigued? He recently shared his keys to successfully pursuing an online degree with us in a Webinar hosted by Joe Gartner, Grantham University's digital media producer. Here's Constantine's take on how he juggled work, family and school.
Gartner: You're a busy guy! Why did you decide to earn a degree at this point in time?
Constantine: I wanted to accomplish something no one else in my family has done. I also wanted to prove to my two children that anything is possible.
Gartner: How did you juggle all your major responsibilities?
Constantine: It was a matter of prioritizing what was important and blocking out time to get those things done. I'm a firm believer in creating task lists for myself. It was important to stick to that regimen and continue to stay disciplined. You need to have clear goals, know what you want to accomplish, set objectives and follow through on them. There's a certain sense of accomplishment from looking at that list at the conclusion of the day and going, "Wow, I got some stuff done," since it's so easy for the day to slip away.
Tip No. 1 -- Manage your time effectively. Find a tool that works for you (to-do lists, calendars, etc.) and stick with it!
Gartner: Any words of wisdom for someone pursuing an online college degree while keeping up with a busy life?
Constantine: Know what you're getting yourself into. Now having gone through an online curriculum, it's challenging. Those who go into it not understanding what it entails could be in for a rude awakening, for lack of a better term. It's not easy. It's going to take dedication. It's going to take planning. It's going to take focus. That would be a word of advice I give to anyone considering pursuing an online education.
Tip No. 2 -- Set realistic expectations. A college degree, whether online or in-person, takes hard work and dedication. Research before you go to make sure you fully understand what will be expected.
Gartner: Thank you for taking the time to talk with me today. Do you have any parting thoughts?
Constantine: Remember, anything worth achieving is going to come with some hard work.