UNITED STATES—This past month, has been one of the most stressful and chaotic that I have encountered in quite some time. If working two jobs wasn’t enough to try to make ends meet, it became a realization that I’m still NOT earning enough to fully cover all my expenses and to live life at a comfortable standard. I mean the entire notion of people wanting at least $10 an hour should not sound foreign to our politicians or small businesses.

You can’t survive on anything less than that, and for all those people out there who think otherwise, I’d love to see you work a job where you’re making about $7 an hour and see how many expenses you are able to cover? I can already hear the pundits talking now, (go to school, get an education). Let me stop you there. I did, and I have, I already have a college degree and am still unable to find a decent paying job. I don’t even want to hear ONE more single person mention to me the fact that an education is like a ‘guarantee’ for a job because America it’s not.

Having an education is indeed vital, but not at the expense to where you drown in debt and you find yourself like me and many of my college pals who go years before being able to land an adequate, decent paying job that actually falls within your respected field of interest. Trust me, I already knew going to college that my major would not be easy to land a job; I mean I’m a liberal arts major, I’m a writer and people just don’t consider my respective field as anything that can yield enough money to pay your expenses and live your life. It seems so many people forget that without writers there are plenty of things that we wouldn’t have on this Earth. No newspapers, no nightly or morning news, no movies, no music, no television, no theatre.

To be honest the only thing we would have as a form of entertainment would be sports. Yes, sports are great, but I’m certain everyone likes to have a diversion every so often, but writers get little to any love at all. It’s not easy making a career out of a field when newspapers and so many online sites want to pay little to nothing for your content. You have to have a side gig or a hustle of some sorts just to get by on all the daily or monthly expenses that are likely to be thrown your way.

So in the midst of being frustrated by not reaching that goal or being in that financial place that I expected maybe 5 years ago, I decided to look into the possibility of going back to school, to perhaps pursue a higher degree in my field of interest. I mean the campus has changed so much since the years that I was an undergraduate. And no one can tell me that you’re too old to go back to school, because in all honesty that is never the case. If its education you want, the only thing that can halt you is YOU!

I met with an advisor, spoke with some professors and have seriously considered the option of pursuing an even higher education than before. I think the difference between then and now is the fact that I KNEW I needed college to escape the environment that I grew up in. I didn’t seriously consider at the time how vital it was to be planning for employment post-graduation. I mean it did become something of serious concern to me during the tail end of my junior year.

I started looking at a variety of job options, but I didn’t have the best advisors really pushing that notion of where I should be looking for employment. They do their job of helping you plan your schedule and after that; you’re on your own. Yes, you’re a young adult, but even then guidance is still needed. I really can’t point the finger; I have to take accountability for perhaps not fighting even harder to get the things that I actually wanted.

My biggest piece of advice I’d like to deliver is that if you have a plan to GO BACK to school do the following: know what you want, how you plan to get it and more importantly what the plan is once you have it.