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How would you like to grow your career, make more money, and find a job you love? Although college is one way to improve your career, there are many unconventional ways to build up your skills and knowledge set – and ultimately land a job you'll love.
From audiobooks and book summaries to expand your general knowledge, to specific courses dedicated to starting a new career, the following list of continuing education opportunities is anything but conventional. Explore the list below to find the best way to continue your education.
Racking up new skills can be a much more cost-effective and efficient way to learn, versus investing four years or more for a college degree and beyond. By focusing in on narrow topics and fitting them into your daily life, everyone can get a little bit smarter each day. Plus, it can help future employers to have well-rounded employees with a little knowledge in a lot of areas. Even more importantly, it's great to stay in a learning and growing mindset, even if it's been years since you were at school.
The continuing education opportunities listed above are broken into several categories.
Books / Audiobooks
There are plenty of useful platforms available where you can buy, rent or freely borrow ebooks or audiobooks on a variety of subjects. These platforms can be a good resource to test out those subjects you didn't like in high school, brush up on history, or even start learning a new language. If you have a long commute for a current job, books and audiobooks can help you put that time to work and learn a little more each day.
If you want to learn a particular skill, there are plenty of online services now that deliver top-notch, specialized classes. Some, such as Coursera, offer a huge range of topics from entertaining shorter classes to more serious and intensive deep-dives into particular skills. Others, such as Springboard, focus on a specific set of courses and provide everything you may need to get started.
If you do look into standalone courses, you may also have the chance to earn certifications in particular areas depending on the provider. These could range from full-on internationally recognized English teacher certification, or be specifically focused on expertise in one type of skill, such as a particular programming language. Regardless, doing well in these courses and getting recognition can help beef up any resume and apply to a variety of fields.
There are so many ways to invest in yourself these days, and all you really need to get started is your phone. None of us have full control over our jobs, and a great way to stay valuable is to continue building skills. See what areas you can strengthen, or consider learning a totally new kind of skill – maybe some coding, or web design, or improving your business English. You'll thank yourself for keeping your brain active, and you never know when these new talents may come in handy.