Applied Learning, Working Parent, Working Adult

How to Talk to Your Family or Boss About Going Back to School

By Ducere Global Business School on September, 15 2021
Ducere Global Business School

Making the decision to return to school after a period of time spent out in the workforce is highly empowering, yet nerve-wracking. While you might understand how a new degree and more information can help you to achieve your professional goals, there is a chance that others will not. Understanding how to explain the benefits that your educational opportunities can offer to others is important for creating a comfortable support system. In this article, we will explore what that looks like.

The Concerns

When you make this decision, you might be surprised to find that some people are not immediately supportive of the idea. In order to understand and mitigate their objections, you will need to consider it from their side. Your family and your boss might have valid concerns, which is why addressing them in a clear and comforting way is important.


Your family will likely wonder how your decision to pursue an education as a working adult will impact them. A working parent already has some time away from the family. Adding an academic commitment to that can lead you to lose even more lost time. It is common for families to worry about how much an education will cost, or what it will mean for their time with you.


Your boss might have similar concerns as your family, though likely for different reasons. It is common for bosses to mistakenly assume that pursuing an education will impact your work in some way. They might worry that you will not be as focused or committed to your work. In fact, they might even believe that getting a further education might cause you to leave the company down the line, which could be problematic for them. Some bosses might even assume that you will use your work-time to work on homework or assignments, leading you to be further distracted.


Explaining Your Goals to Family

Your family wants you to succeed, but sometimes you need to explain how an education will benefit you. Tell your family about your dreams and aspirations—and how your educational goals fit into making them a reality. Remember, your decision to go back to school is one that will benefit your entire family. Explaining this can really help them to see it for the opportunity that it is.


An even better way to generate buy-in with your family is to also remind them what this commitment can mean for the family’s future. Highlight benefits such as more money, a better job, working more stable hours or even the ability to run your own business. Focusing on what your academic goals are--and why--can help others recognise the ROI of a degree. Of course, be sure to remind them that they will not be any less important in your eyes. Try to explain how you will still prioritize them during this time.


Explaining Your Goals to Your Employer

While most employers understand the benefits of having well-educated employees, that doesn’t mean that everyone will. To begin the discussion, it can be beneficial to highlight clear boundaries. Be upfront in letting your boss know that your decision to pursue an education is not going to detract from your performance at work.


Fortunately, at Ducere, you can benefit from applied learning. This means that you will be able to take what you are learning and directly apply it to perform more effectively as an employee. Not only will you learn more about business and how to improve a company, but you will actively gain skills that will help you to grow and serve your company more effectively. 


Realistically, Ducere is designed for working adults who want to benefit from learning about business and actively apply what they learn. In many ways, the coursework that you will pursue is comparable to paid educational opportunities that your boss could be providing you with. You will actively gain skills at no cost to the company, ultimately making this investment as beneficial for your employer as it is for you.



As a working adult, you will be faced with some unique challenges. Finding a balance between work, education and family can require a bit of an adjustment for everyone. To ensure that you have the right people on your support team, be prepared to explain the value of your decision and what kind of benefits that it will bring for everyone around you. The ways that your coursework will benefit you might be obvious. Just remember that you are also learning so you will have more to give.

Take a few minutes and check out all of our degree options here and get started on fulfilling your dreams.


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