How to Determine If You're Better Off at School or in the Workforce

Career Wizardry 17 October, 2023

Whether you're fresh out of high school or just quit your day job, one question that plagues most job-seekers is, "Should I go to school or start working?" Both have their pros and cons, but how do you decide which route is best for you? It's not an easy decision, but it's definitely worth taking the time and effort to weigh the options. In this blog post, we'll dive into how to determine if going to school or starting work is the right choice for you.

Consider your interests and passions

One of the first things you need to consider is your interests and passions. Look at what you're passionate about and think about how you can turn it into a career. If you need some guidance, take personality and career assessments to get a better understanding of what you're suited for. Keep in mind that schooling might offer more opportunities to explore a variety of interests, while working will give you hands-on experience in a specific field.

Evaluate your current finances

Finances play a huge role in deciding whether to attend school or start working. Take a good look at your financial situation and consider how much you're willing to invest in your education. Can you afford tuition, books, and living expenses while in school? If not, then starting work and saving up for school later might be the more practical choice. However, if you have the funds and resources, going to school could potentially lead to higher-paying jobs in the long run.

Research the job market in your field

Another important factor to consider is the job market for your chosen career. Research what the demand is like for your desired position and what qualifications and experiences are required. Some fields require a specific degree or certification, while others value hands-on experience over education. This research can help you to decide whether it's worth investing in an education or if you can gain experience solely through work.

Decide what kind of work experience you want

Consider the kind of work experience you want to gain. Do you want to start at the bottom and work your way up, or do you want to hit the ground running with a higher position? A degree can often provide a path to higher-level positions, but it might not be necessary if you have the necessary skills and experience. Obtaining entry-level positions, no matter how menial they may be, will help to build your resume and skills, which can ultimately lead to better job prospects.

Determine your long-term goals

Finally, think about your long-term goals. Where do you see yourself in five years, ten years, or even twenty years? Consider what you want to accomplish in your career and how you can achieve those goals. Will getting a degree help you reach those goals, or can you achieve them through work experience? It's essential to keep your eyes on the prize and make your decision based on where you want to be in the future.

Ultimately, there's no one-size-fits-all answer to the question, whether to attend school or start working. It all depends on your individual circumstances and goals. Take into account your passions, finances, career aspirations, and job prospects when making your decision. It's essential to remember that no matter what route you take, you can always change your mind. Life is unpredictable, and your career path may take unexpected turns. The most important thing is to never stop learning and growing, whether that means obtaining a degree or gaining experience in the workforce.