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babiturtle36's avatar

Any advice for a 29 yr old going to college for the first time?

Asked by babiturtle36 (2359points) June 21st, 2009 from iPhone

So, after ten years of working, moving, ect…..I’m FINALLY going to school.
I was wondering if anyone had any tips or secrets to help me find my way.
I have to admit, it’s kinda scary!

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13 Answers

Jeruba's avatar


Don’t expect to get it on the first day. Give yourself at least three weeks to settle down.

Don’t be intimidated by all the younger folks. It’s okay if you don’t have all that much in common with them. Some won’t care how old you are. You are not ruining the curve.

If you don’t already feel like you know how to study and listen and learn, that is the main first focus. Can you take a warmup course, say, at a community college, over the summer?

Have fun. Your education is not just for a job but for your life. Nothing you learn is ever wasted. This is going to be great.

DarkScribe's avatar

Great news! You won’t be alone as a mature age student – every campus has quite a few. Don’t make the mistake that some do of trying to become involved in the on-campus social life – as mature age you won’t handle it and the required study as well as the younger students do.

I am still studying, completing a degree at the moment. I already have six, so I have a thirty plus year history of mature age study. It can be very rewarding.

augustlan's avatar

Congratulations! I am envious. :)

Kiev749's avatar

yeah, don’t sleep through your classes. thats a horrible idea even for a 19 year old… like me. but, get involved. Student Union, activities, anything. it will make college so much better.

cdwccrn's avatar

Use good time organization skills and good study practices.
If you get to feeling like you’re a juggler with alot of balls in the air, concentrate on the one in your hand.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

The same things that work in the work world applies at school—be on time, organized, ask questions when you don’t understand, meet deadlines, advocate for yourself. You’re the customer, and are paying to be there. All of that makes so much more sense at 29 than it does to most 19 year olds. Get in there and wreck the grading curve!!!!

TitsMcGhee's avatar

Where are you attending school and are you living on campus?

babiturtle36's avatar

Houston, no I have my own place.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

@babiturtle36: Congratulations! This is really exciting! I live in Houston, too! Are you going to UH? I’m going to take a wild guess that you are, since it has the biggest enrollment in Houston. Actually, what I’m about to say applies to most colleges, but especially UH in my experience.

Be prepared for a lot of red tape with parking, class registration, the cashier’s office, all that sort of thing. Things are often unnecessarily complicated and people will often tell you “oh, that’s not possible”, but a lot of the time it is, you just need to find someone else to help you. If you PM your school or if you do go to UH, main campus or downtown, and I can tell you more specifics about what to expect.

Don’t feel self-conscious about being a little older than the average student. You have just as much of a right to be there as everyone else, and you’ve earned it.


timothykinney's avatar

I went back to school 8 years after high school, so that made me about 26. I went to a community college to start because I was nervous like you are. I tested out of College Algebra but took it anyway because I really wanted a solid foundation (science was my intended major). After the first exam I realized that I was doing just fine and everything was gravy.

I am now 31 and a senior in Chemical Physics at Rice University, which is a very competitive school. I find myself at somewhat of a disadvantage in this environment because I don’t have a large group of friends to study with and I’m not willing to stay up all night as often as the other students. But all in all, I am very happy to be in school.

Who knows what challenges you will face? But keep an open mind, work hard, and explore your intellectual curiosity. If you do your best, you can’t go wrong.

Dorkgirl's avatar

@timothykinney has a good point about starting off at the community college. Not only is is less expensive, there’s usually smaller classes and it’s a good way to get your feet wet.
My husband went back to school at 28 and I went back at 38. There’s something to be said for the maturity of being an older student. We both found that we focused on the work and not on the social BS that comes with being 18 or 20 and in college.
Good luck. I hope it’s a rewarding experience. I know it was for us.

knitfroggy's avatar

Good luck to you! My husband went back to school last year at the age of 35. It was a lot harder than he thought it was going to be. He said he’d forgotten how to study. It took him a few weeks, but he got into the swing of it and has really enjoyed himself.

vegelizabeth's avatar

GO FOR IT ! & congrats. :)

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