One of the biggest, if not the biggest, complaint among students is how much money their degree is costing them. Not just from classes, but textbooks, supplies, living expenses, etc. Students are taught that earning a degree is the way to better their lives and set them up to have a family, own a home, and have the life they want. However, the cost of earning that degree, which doesn’t always result in a high-paying job, is sometimes too much for students.

Besides the cost, another common complaint is how much time schooling takes up. Many students work a job, sometimes more than one, to be able to afford school. This, however, can leave them little time to focus on their courses and get the most out of their degree.

What’s the point in spending money and struggling to earn a degree, if you don’t feel confident upon graduation because you’re limited time took away your focus from your learning?  So, what’s the solution when you’re short on time and money?

With a foundation degree, it’s possible to balance your time working and getting the most out of your education. This type of degree combines academic and vocational credits that allows you to get real-world work experience to enable you to enter the workforce. These degrees qualify as a Level 4 or 5 degree, depending on how much time you dedicate to the program.

With a growing number of these degrees being offered by more and more UK universities, finding a topic you’re passionate about will be easy. Popular choices include social care, counseling, health professions, agriculture, and more. Students choose this degree because what you’re learning in the classroom will directly correspond to what you’re learning on the job. You can put your growing knowledge to the test in real situations, and understand what you’re learning academically on another level. Foundation degrees push forward the idea of critical thinking and management skills, leaving you better equipped to find a position in your chosen career.

Similar to having an internship, it’s important to take advantage of your workplace and co-workers’ knowledge of the field. Show up on time and ready to participate, putting your best foot forward to impress your mentors. Be engaged in your work, as this is the foundation of your course and you will be tested on it.

It’s also imperative to remain focused on the vocational side of your degree because your workplace could be a possible employer once your degree is earned. They can also be used as a reference for future jobs or further study.

These degrees require a focus and motivation to the field you want to enter, so do your research and make sure you find a program that matches your goals and aspirations. Both your academic and vocational time will give you a platform for your future, giving you a leg up when you start looking for jobs, so remember this experience is equally as important as your job after university.

Author:  Pete Clark