Too old to go back to school?

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I just turned 25 last month and I plan to (finally) return to college to finish my bachelor's degree. I couldn't be more nervous. Outside of my classes, I worry that I'll be a bit too old to relate to my classmates. I know 25 isn't old, but that's how I feel and I know most people graduate when they're 23. It didn't really hit me until I applied to a college and they sent me a packet titled "adult learners" as if I'm a different breed. As if 18 is not an adult.

Have any of you went back to school a bit late?
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I did not go back to school late, but I was there on and off for a little while (long story). Regardless, I do not think there is such a thing as being too old to learn.

In the early-mid 90s, I found myself taking classes with many women who were in their 40's, 50's and some in their 60's. it was during the recession, most lost the jobs they held for years, and they were going to school to start their continuing education or finish it. They were more serious and far better students than any 18 year old there. That is for sure. You get a lot of BS out the way and are in a better head space. Of course some thought of them as too old to be there, and I remember some 18 year olds acting like I was ancient in my early 20's, but none of that is relevant. Only your determination is.
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When I hear terms like "hipster" I think, who told cliques they could leave high school??

You will bring real life experience and perspective to your learning. This will serve you well. Congratulations to you for making this decision. It's hard to go back. Just be yourself and remember why you are there (really, who cares if you look, act, etc older than the 22 year old next to you? ) your professors will also appreciate the dedication and focus you bring with you. It's all good!
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You aren't too old, that is great age! You should be proud of yourself for making that desicion
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I took a few college classes when I was in my late 20's and I definitely enjoyed it. I already had my BA, but it was just for fun to see if I was ready to go back to get my MA while caring for a small child.

I did extremely well without much effort because I was so scheduled and focused. I don't know if you plan to go full time and live on campus, but that would be the really odd social part. I didn't feel like I related well to my classmates being a divorced single mom, but in the end I still really liked being in a learning environment again, no matter who was sitting next to me.
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The average age of adult learners (which is the term used to describe college students) is much older than you would think.

In fact, many of the people in my classes were in their 40's and 50's, sometimes 60's. I don't think you're ever too old to go back to school. One lady in a program on campus is in her late 60's and getting her PhD. I think that you should do it! And you'd be surprised, not everyone graduating is 22 or 23. I know plenty of people who were 26 or 27 before they got their Bachelor's degrees.
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Never too old. In any job you do you could be working with people of vastly differing ages, why should studying be looked on any differently? And it's really not that big of an age difference in the grand scheme of things. Go for it and don't worry!
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I don't think whether or not you'll be able to relate to your classmates is all that important; more important that you relate to the professor, who's grading you! LOL But if you work during the day, for instance, and schedule classes at night, there is a chance a lot of the students will be "adult learners."

I took a series of courses several yrs ago, long after I completed my degrees. Some students were younger and others were older. It didn't make any difference to me.

Never too late to go back! Congrats.
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About half of my nursing class was fresh out of high school, and the rest of us were not. We all got along fine. Those of us who were older had a higher graduation rate. We had a far more realistic sense of what nursing entailed, were more determined, and had a work ethic
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You're just a young pup! I dropped out for a few years and then went back at 29 and graduated at 31. Then my husband went back and finished at 33. Now I'm taking classes at the local community college at 55. Don't feel like you'll stick out, because there are people of all ages in college for all kinds of reasons. I'm often the oldest person in my classes, but not always. This semester one of my classes has a couple of older people. So 25 is young! Anyway, it's really hard to judge how old people are once they're adults. Chances are most people won't be able to tell if you're 25, 22, or 28.
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The average age of adult learners (which is the term used to describe college students) is much older than you would think.
Originally Posted by DaniGirl88
I was thinking "adult learners" applied to college students in general, and was not specifically going by age. If you're 18, you are technically an adult. No longer in high school, and continuing your education.
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When I hear terms like "hipster" I think, who told cliques they could leave high school??

Never too old! Good luck.
I heard on the radio today that a son/father duo graduated from community college and plan to go to the university close by to become teachers. The dad is 80.
So, no, you're never too old!
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It's not easy being a princess, but hey, if the crown fits.
The average age of adult learners (which is the term used to describe college students) is much older than you would think.
Originally Posted by DaniGirl88
I was thinking "adult learners" applied to college students in general, and was not specifically going by age. If you're 18, you are technically an adult. No longer in high school, and continuing your education.
Originally Posted by Fifi.G
No, adult learners are different from traditional college students.
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We all know that some people go to school at 60, 70, 80 years old and that's great but is not your case. You're just a few years older than the typical 20 or 22 years old college student. So what? Go ahead and go back to school. If you don't do it now, when you're 30 you'll be regretting not having done it in your 20's.
The other option you have if you think you will not "fit" in a college campus is getting your degree online, would that work?
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I went to a very small military academy. I dropped out and went back when I was older. I did stick out because everyone literally knew everyone else the school was so small but no one judged me.


Also being an "adult learner" I got better grades than when I went to college right out of high school. I wasn't self conscious about asking questions or "looking stupid".


I also made some friends out of the deal.


There were a handful of other adult learners there, people into their 40's who had children, because of the nature of a military school they had to live on campus in a regimented lifestyle. Everyone I knew had a lot of respect for these people who, with support from their families, put their life on hold for 4 years.


Plus the 45 year old ex Navy guy who lived next door taught us how to properly bet and what a vig is and how to smoke a cigar with out getting sick. This was when I was 18 right out of HS.
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Never too old! 25 is old? I BEGAN to work in my degree when I was 28, and we had students of all ages in my program - I think the oldest was 55. I'll admit was annoying having to deal with the drama caused by the younger students, though.

Having said that, I wouldn't recommend waiting until you're almost 30 to begin your academic career, like I did.

I'm in my 40s, and if I could find a way to go back to school right now, I'd do it without hesitation.

Stay with it!
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When I read the thread title I expected you to be at least middle-aged. And I was still ready to tell that much older "you" that you're not too old!

Since the recession hit, a ton of people have been going back to school. Grad schools are full of people who are twice your age.
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I volunteered for early retirement from my company last August. In September I went back to school for a 3-month continuing ed program in medical billing and got a certificate when completed the program. I was 48. Loved the opportunity and met some nice new friends. Go for it!
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First off, your mind is in the right place and that counts more than being perceived as "old" in a college classroom. I'm 27 and just got my BA last year so I can relate. There are many students who were in their 30s and older in community college...one woman in her 50s even referred to herself as a "professional student. I just can't stop learning!" which I found endearing. In the university setting, most of the students were in their late teens to mid-20s but there were still plenty of older students.

At the end of the day, you're there for you. These other people and their opinions shouldn't mean too much, especially when you're trying to better yourself.
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Its not a matter of age but determination. Only 25?
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