Education holds an immense amount of power. It is the one gift that we can give ourselves that cannot be taken away. As women, further education enables us to:
• Start a new career
• Advance in our existing career
• Earn more income
• Have a higher quality of life
• Maintain job security
• Boost our self image and self esteem
Additionally, education allows us to be role models for others as well as encouraging our children to pursue higher education.
As we progress through our lives, women often find that it becomes more difficult to allocate the time and make the commitment to go back to school. Families are established and careers in place bringing the feelings of guilt when thinking about doing something for ourselves. By making the decision to return to school, the woman, her family and her career will all benefit in the long run.
Unfortunately, there are many uncontrollable factors that lead women to seek more education. The two-income household is a reality and with unemployment at staggering levels, losing one of those incomes can be devastating. An abrupt change in household dynamics can force a woman to reevaluate her earning potential as a single parent. Whether by choice or out of necessity, women are seeing the need to advance their education and enjoying the value it brings.
Statistics show that women with college degrees earn 30.8% more today than in 1979. More women are taking advantage of this by pursuing undergraduate degrees. 43.1% of undergraduate students in the 1969-1970 academic years were women compared to 57.2% in 2009-2010. This is projected to increase to 58% by 2020-2021. Women pursuing graduate degrees are also increasing. 38.8% of graduate students in 1969-1970 were women versus 60.3% in 2009-2010. (U.S. Department of Education-National Center for Education Statistics)