Back to College – Boomers and education

While those of us of the boomer generation have valued education, a lot of boomers are finding themselves going back to school.  The two biggest reasons for this is the job market and personal reasons.  This is an area that I have personal experience with because I was one of the casualties of the tech bubble and bust.

For almost twenty five years I had progressively better jobs in the Information Technology industry.  All of that came crashing down when the tech bubble burst and I saw my job and thousands of jobs like mine be shipped out to India and China.  Unfortunately for me, I had not kept up with the technology and by the time the tech sector crashed, I had been in management positions for several years.

I had not kept up with my technical skills and found myself out of a job and without the marketable skills necessary to get back in the industry.  After struggling for several years, I am now in a position to be able to go back to college.  The biggest question for me is, do I want to update my skills or do I want to try for a different career altogether?

After the ordeal that I went through, there are some things that are clear in my mind:

  1. There is no longer any such thing as working for a company for 30 years and retiring from it.
  2. Even if you achieved to retire from the same company after 30 years, there is no guarantee that the retirement pension will be there.
  3. Whatever happens, you have to have multiple streams of income.
  4. However small, I want to have a business of my own.  If for no other reason, I’ll use the business for its deductions.

Most important of all is this, whatever I choose, I want to make sure it will not become obsolete in just a few years.  This will probably mean a full degree and possibly a post-graduate degree as well.  I admit it, I still have the achievement bug!

What do you think?Do you plan to return to school?  Have you found yourself in a situation where you had to re-train to gain new skills?  Do you find yourself in a present job situation that can disappear?  Are you at a point in your life where you are thinking about a major life change?