Saturday, June 20, 2009

Focus on Family Finances - Education

The June, 2009 issue of the Ensign has some great articles on family finances and preparedness. One article brought up one of my favorite ideas about handling unemployment, right at the beginning.

In Focus on Family Finances, Allie Schulte from Welfare Services writes about a family that had become unemployed. They turned this into an opportunity to go back to college and finish the Bachelor's degrees they'd started. Because of that, their job options became far better than they would have without the extra education, and their now on solid financial footing.

An education is one of the best and least risky investments one can make while working towards self-sufficiency, especially if one has recently become unemployed. Consider:
  1. An education pays off. Check out this US Census report on financial benefits of education.
  2. When a recruiter sees a six month period (corresponding to six months of unemployment) missing from a resume, he or she is concerned. Replace that time with work towards more education however, and it can only make a resume look better.
  3. If you've been laid off, maybe the work you were doing wasn't a great fit - maybe it's time to learn some new skills, or branch out into an entirely different area.
  4. By taking more classes now, you'll have a more up-to-date education than others working in the field, and more experience than many of those just graduating.
  5. Networking to find employment is more effective while taking classes than while surfing job posting websites.
  6. Prophets of the Church have advised us to get as much education as possible: Seek Learning, by President Hinckley
There are many different flexible programs available. I actually take part-time classes at the local university, just to make sure that my skills stay up-to-date and that I keep my career moving in the direction that I want. If I get laid off, I'll just switch to being a full-time student again, and work towards an advanced degree.

(Stanford University and the University of Washington are pictured above)

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