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Single Mum's Life,  Student Life

College or Work? Decision Time – I Need Advice

So, guys, we are in March now. That means there are only 3 months left until the end of the Academic year. I am completely torn in what to do for the next Academic year. I mean, should I leave college and try to get a part-time job? Should I stay in college and struggle with no money? I am the sort of person who gives advice to other people but I cannot advice myself. Am I the only one?

What is going on?

Well, I have been on a course at college in the last 2 years and I have worked very hard to make sure I get everything passed and completed. During that time my financial support has been good, however, recently my circumstances had changed and that has caused my financial support to reduce. Right now, the only support I have is college Bursary but that will only last until June. What happens after June? That is the issue I am facing. So obviously, everyone goes on summer holidays etc. and then goes back to work/school in August.

Issue

I am a single mum with no money. I would love to continue and finish 2 more years at college, Higher National Certificate/Higher National Diploma, clearly that was my goal in going back to studies in the first place. It would be very awesome and could bring happiness and greatness for mine and daughter’s future. However, due to low finance, I may not be able to cope with everything.  Everywhere I go or turn to for advice, all say HNC level is hard. It’s almost terrifying when I think about it. But I still have the determination to go for it. All I need is to get my finance issue sorted.

Job Hunt

We all know the market for jobs is very high at the moment because everybody is job hunting and there are lots and lots of business and companies closing down. So clearly I have a 10% chance of getting a job because I am a single mum and I will need help with childcare.

If I go to college, I will get help childcare. If I get a full-time job, I will have to pay a childminder and that will cost me all my wages. But it’s not only the childcare I am worried about, what about food, what about the bills at home? How will they get paid? If I go to college, how will I cope with the stress from college and money stress and as well as being a mum? If I don’t go to college, I will fill with regret and depression, because although I will be spending the time at home, job hunting, etc I will miss college and wished I had gone for it. I am scared that 5 to 10 years ahead, I might still be jobless and even homeless too.

Should I leave college and hope for the best? Or Should I stay in college and hope for the best too?

So what do I do? Any advice will be appreciated. 

 

11 Comments

  • POOVANESH PATHER

    You’re so brave to study and work. I suggest that you do online teaching with VIP kid to support yourself and your daughter. You make your own hours so you will have time to study as well. You also need to grow your village real quick. Try moms and tots facebook groups in your area. I wish you luck with your future plans.

  • Soniasblog

    Wow, I am overwhelmed by all the positive support from you all. Thank you so much. I just want a better future for my daughter and I. I know it is going to be very hard but I am willing to give it all that I have. My only concern is childcare. I wish I had great support from my family, and I wish I had some friends that I know I can fully trust to look after my child. I am sure if I try to seek some advice from an advisor, hopefully, something good will come from it. Regarding online and part-time courses, as well as my disability, I also have learning difficulties, so I would really struggle. However, guys, I really appreciate every single comment. Thank you for sharing your stories with me, it has made realise that I am on the right track, all I need to do is ask for help and accept as much help as possible to get through the course and get my qualifications. Thank you all so much and I will let you all know what my final decision will be.

  • Juliet from Julietmeiling.com

    This is a very difficult decision you have to make. If possible, could you take classes online and find a part-time job so you can continue your education and still earn money towards supporting yourself and your children. You may need to cut back on credit hours to be able to manage being a mom, being a college student, and being a part-time worker but you would still be getting closer to your degree and making money. I would also go and perhaps talk to an academic advisor too and see what they have to say in regard to your situation. Again, this is a terribly tough decision for you, but I know at the end of the day you will make the right choice for yourself and your own life.

  • Nichola

    Hey Sonia,
    I understand what you are going through Sonia but here was the case, My dad is a 39-year-old architect finished It while handling 6 family members in my family plus his own firm which eventually went bankrupt and he had to work for another firm. Throughout his study times to facing debt and hardships there were times we had to rely on our relatives and neighbors for food and also we had to go through a hell lot of stress and my dad was working his tail off.
    Finally, he finished his Masters and also is Chattered program and now he is working in a well known international Firm with a good salary while trying to start back his firm again.
    So currently I’m a medical student too I know the pain of higher studies believe me. But all I’m saying is see your future and career life ahead. Don’t shy away from getting the help you need to work hard and follow your passion you will meet your reward. Be confident, I wish you all the best!!!

  • dani

    I can understand how hard this could be. I wish every country will be like Germany where mothers are taken cared of and the kids receive money monthly to support their needs. Especially single mothers, I wish it’s also like here where single mother receives money monthly from the government. If there would be classes in the evening, maybe it is an option and also try work from home jobs that pay decent amount of money. You can also teach English online. There are so many option online. I hope you find something and even scholarships. And affiliate marketing programs so you will have passive income.

  • Noel Lizotte

    I have an employee in a similar situation to yours. She is able to receive assistance for childcare while she takes college courses and works part time. The balance has become how many hours she works / how much money she makes and the courses she takes.

    We keep her part time hours below the income level to maintain her childcare assistance. She takes one or two courses each class session. This helps her complete all assignments and keep grades up.

    The income has helped with her regular expenses (housing, food, etc). Her classes are paid for with some grants / assistance through the school.

    Perhaps you have options like this available to you? Maybe a job at the school would be an option – so you can get reduced tuition as well as bringing income to pay for life.

    Best of luck!

  • Blair

    Hey Sonia, any chance some of the classes are offered in the evening or on the weekend or online. That could allow you more time for work and support you and the girls while still continuing your education. I know how hard if can be trying to improve your education as a mature student with a family. I returned to school at 40 with a five year old and a new baby while working part time. I had it a little earlier I had my wife to tend to the kids. We lived of grants , part time income and sometimes credit cards but we made it.
    It won’t be easy , you will be exhausted at times and you will miss out on lots, if it’s your dream for you and your girls you will make it.

    • Soniasblog

      Thank you, Blair. There is a part-time option that I can do but I wouldn’t consider it because its just 1 day per week, and I will be given a lot of homework and project with a short deadline. I suppose it would have easier if I had a strong support system, but the reality is I don’t have any support. My daughter is starting Primary school in August and I can’t be at the same places at the same time. Like, who will take her to school and pick her up? Childminders are expensive and If I get a grant, I will have to pay it back. The sad part of this whole thing is even if I complete HNC, there is no guarantee that I will get a job. So it’s almost like I am being selfish. But then that’s what it means to chase your dreams. My main fear is that it will affect my daughter alot. For example, if she had a bad day at school, I might not be able to pick it up. If something bad happens to her, that will be my breaking point. Then again, thats every parents fear.

    • Ariette

      Thank you so much for your honesty.

      The decision is never easy and only one that you can make. I would guide you to consider every option and weigh every obstacle or opportunity. For instance, if you can do night classes, summer school, or intensive courses (runs for a week) or online. Or see if you can have a family member or ask someone you know to be an in-house mothers helper (so you can be home to study or work, but know someone is watching your child(Ren)… And because you’re still at home, it’s more of a relief for you, too. While finances are tight, is there anyone in your circle such as good friends or family who might be able to help? For instance I attend a church that is really hospitable and the community steps up to help anyone in financial need.

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