Congratulations! You’ve graduated! Now, what classes are you taking this fall?
If you’re a bit confused, I don’t blame you. After all, you just got done with classwork, right? You’ve been inside a classroom since you first started preschool, and now we’re suggesting you take more classes after graduation?
Believe it or not, taking a class or two for the first few years after graduation can benefit your career, your earning potential, your health and even your romantic options. Here are the five types of classes you don’t want to skip:
1. Certification classes
Let’s say you’re interested in a career in project management. Are you PMP-certified? Most practical degrees don’t come with all the necessary certifications that employers want to see. Whether you want to be a librarian, a coder or a yoga instructor, there are certificates you can get that make you more attractive in a competitive job market.
2. Gym classes
Speaking of attractiveness… it’s time to go to your local gym and sign up for gym class. Don’t worry, it won’t be anything like playing dodgeball in middle school. Pick a spin class, a pilates class or a kickboxing class to keep yourself active, improve your health and confidence and meet new people. Gym classes are also great ways to work off stress and fight post-graduate depression.
3. Special interest classes
In addition to your gym class, sign up for a course based around your interests. Look at community college offerings or consider Meetup.com, and take a class in cooking, French or game design. You’re not actually doing this to learn French; you’re doing this to build a new social network. The year immediately after graduation is often the loneliest year of a young person’s life, so put yourself in a situation where you’re required to make friends. If you’re looking for a special someone, these kinds of classes are also a great way to meet people you might want to date.
4. Online classes
In addition to going out and meeting new people, you also need something you can do while you’re spending the days researching jobs and sending resumes. Look for an online class in a skill you may have missed in college: become an Excel expert or go to Code School and learn Ruby. These classes are intended to be taken in 20 to 30 minute short bursts, perfect for those much-needed mental breaks between cover letter revisions. In addition, you’ll be able to give a positive answer when interviewers ask you what you’ve been doing since graduation.
5. Degree-based classes
Although it’s hard to think about jumping back into school right after graduation, many people do in fact sign themselves up for another round of college coursework. Graduate school is an option, as many jobs require a MA as part of application. Other students prefer to find a program specifically designed for adult learners, like Stritch University’s bachelor of science in business administration.
Take at least two of these classes every year to maximize your opportunities and broaden your horizons. Even if you are lucky enough to land a job after graduation, adding a wine-tasting course or an online Photoshop course is a great way to continue expanding your skills and your network.
So. What classes are you taking this fall?
Article contributed by Amanda Green.