You made the choice to skip college to follow a passion, or a great idea, and your dream of being an entrepreneur, but now you want to revisit what classroom education can do for you. It is not at all uncommon for business owners with no formal education to go back to school to earn one after having been in the working world for several years. In many ways, beginning your educational experience after you have learned some real-world lessons can be very fruitful.
What is a consistent theme though, regardless of timing, is payment. College is expensive and there is no way around that. Tuition costs are not negotiable and regardless of how they are paid, payment is a requirement of attendance. As a potential student of a non-traditional circumstance, your loan needs might look different than they would have if you had gone straight to college following high school. But understanding how the design of your life will be impacted by the incorporation of student loan debt is easier than you might think.
You have your business budget and your personal budget, and although the two are independent of one another they are still related. As a business owner, you already know financial sacrifice. No stranger to lean living, you have probably already assumed that student loans will impact your finances both now, and in the future but you may want a more specific idea of this impact before you make permanent decisions.
You can use a student loan repayment calculator to estimate what your monthly payments may be when taking out a student loan with a private lender in order to pay for upcoming college. This is helpful because it allows you to enter this next stage with managed expectations instead of blind faith. Since you have your existing business and career to consider this perk is huge. Although you may be comfortable with risk at a certain level, almost nobody is comfortable throwing caution to the wind as it pertains to their finances. The wealthiest and financially successful people are in that league because they pay attention to their money, not because they take a casual approach towards it.
A student loan repayment calculator will also come in handy while you are shopping around between different lenders. Being able to compare how various rates and terms will look for you in terms of repayment will help you to decide which loan to pursue. Private lenders have the power to create and mold the terms of their loans as they wish, so using the information you gain from your experience with the repayment calculator will be invaluable during any conversations about term negotiations between you and the different lending agencies you are considering giving your business to.
Round Out Your Resume
As a business owner, your resume and work experience will look different than that of a person who decided to pursue a more traditional path. Having said that, making the decision to earn your college education will round out your resume, and not just on paper. A degree will open certain doors that not having one can prevent you from being able to walk through, not to mention a college degree can be in some ways, a professional safety net.
Returning to school as an experienced business owner can contribute to your understanding of not just your specific area of business but the craft of entrepreneurship in general. Being exposed to the most modern theory available is a huge perk of classroom education. It can increase your factual knowledge and sharpen your creative brain at the same time. Formal education can fill in the knowledge gaps in your skills and expertise. Being educated on supporting elements like accounting practices, economics, inventory management, and pricing models are just a few examples of ways that a college degree can round out your entrepreneurial resume.
Expand Your Network
It is no secret that you will create a network of peers and mentors during your studies and attending school at this stage of your career gives you a chance to create that network more purposefully. When following a traditional path to college, you are establishing your network with no rhyme or reason, simply based on the chemistry of personalities. But having decided on this path instead narrows your goals and focus and allows you the vision to create a network that you know is related to your career choice and can enrich your overall experience in more specific terms.