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Re-entry Student GraduateWelcome to our online student discussion forums! This is the place to ask a question about returning to college, share information with other returning students, or just join in the discussion!

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#15 - 09/20/2001 20:29 PM Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Anonymous
Unregistered

I am 28 and am in my second semester of returning to school. Sometimes I feel like if I were in a university, I would be able to handle the fact that I am older than the traditional student. But, at the community college level, there seems to be a lot more younger students. How can I get over these feelings of dread and anxiety that accompany each new semester of classes with the "youngins"? confused

[ September 20, 2001: Message edited by: admin ]

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#16 - 09/20/2001 20:33 PM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Anonymous
Unregistered

Yes, I want back at 39. I too felt uneasy with the younger students at first. It helps after you get to know them and a little time goes by :p. Plus, there are sometimes evening classes and more older students are there. I heard the median age for women who return to college is around 30 or so. cool

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#17 - 09/21/2001 08:56 AM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Anonymous
Unregistered

I'm 45. Yes it feels weird; sometimes as if I don't belong. At this age, we have a different focus on education.

After you've been in the classes awhile - you realize, the age difference means a lot more to you than it does to the younger ones!

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#18 - 10/30/2001 09:00 AM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
bellwether Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/30/2001
Loc: rochester new york
Chloe, most of the teen students at the community level are just thinking, crap another older serious student to blow the curve! Don't sweat it, one of the advantages of being an older student is that you are not there to make friends and join social groups, you are there to get seriously educated and get a degree.

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#19 - 10/30/2001 19:27 PM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Anonymous
Unregistered

Hi, I am 45 been going to college for two years. This semester, I needed to transfer to the community college for a couple of classes. Donlt feel lonely, I am taking an interpersonal class, nevertheless, and these students, don;t even acknowledge , I exist. I am not there to become friends with these students, but being polite, would be an acceptable behavior. Regardless, of the difference in there ages, manners are manners, and it hurts to be treated poorly by another person, no matter what age we are. I am now checking into schools that have a good ratio of non-trad students. At the State College, they were still between 18-22 and they invited me everywhere. It has been like day and night. I dread this class, daily and can;t waituntil September. My point in all this, is I believe it depends on te school, the amount of non-trad students, which anyone over 25 is considered to be. I will stay around for one more semester, but then I am gone. I think all students have enough to deal with, without this additional stress. I also, feel it I want to attend school during the day, that should be my option, not the choice given to me by students, younger than myself. I have a ten yoear old daughter, and if she ever treated someone, in such a way because of age, I would be extremely, disappointed in her. I mean, mo one knows what reason in life. cross our paths, that we may not have the opportunity or desire to go to school at 18. Don"t give up, but if after a while it doesn't change, maybe check into some other options. Good Luck, Bonnie tbbjrocks@aol.com

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#20 - 10/30/2001 20:56 PM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Anonymous
Unregistered

This can happen. When I attended a community college and took evening classes, there were some older students there so I didn't feel quite so alone. But when I transferred to a well respected four year university and began day classes, most of the students barely spoke to me. They were polite, but it was very lonely. Some did look at me like "what are you doing here?" while others were more accepting. The adult student organization at the college tried to get some community going, but hardly any one showed up for planned events. It probably really does depend on the school and the broad support systems in place for adult students (not just one person in a corner of an administrator's office.) We ARE there to get an education and not to party, but seeing and interacting with others closer to our age (I'm over 40) is a great help in staying the course. Just my humble opinion. I would love to hear others. :p

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#21 - 11/18/2001 11:15 AM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Anonymous
Unregistered

I am 39 and in my second semester at a community college. For the most part it is VERY lonely. The 'youngins' barely acknowledge I exist and it is difficult at times. I CRINGE when a teacher wants us to form groups for an assignment, because of course, nobody wants me to be in their group. It's strange because I am maintaining a 4.0 and would be willing to help ANY student with the classwork. But they preferr to pretend I don't exist.

I also don't appreciate the time the teachers spend on the youngins who don't do the homework, assignments etc.... I don't think it is fair that a good part of my paying class time is spent on the teacher explaining things to students who should have done the assignments the night before.

And the mandatory Health Class. Ugh. I had to sit and listen to a teacher lecture on sex and VD. She listed the ways to prevent VD and of course abstinence wasn't included. I also didn't appreciate having to listen to a lecture on detailed homosexual sex practices.

I'm DREADING next semester's Government class. The class discussions on politics will mainly revolve around a group of 18 year olds who have never voted. Not even once. Most can't even list the last ten Presidents.

I'm gearing up to take as many classes as I can online so I don't have to be subjected to the youngins.

Sorry for being negative about the experience, but it is very trying at times.

Neenie

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#22 - 11/18/2001 12:05 PM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Anonymous
Unregistered

Neenie:

Thanks so much for sharing this with us. Sometimes the way we honestly feel *isn't* bright and sunny :). A lot of adults I've spoken to would like to go back to school but don't think they could do it because they feel they wouldn't fit in. Personally, I have had positive and negative experiences. The most positive were when there were some other adult students in the classes with me. But I know many older students sail successfully through and connect very well with the younger ones!!! The fact is, our student demographiic is growing, and they will get used to us :). As for core curriculum subjects such as Government and Political Science, you ***may*** be able to take a CLEP or other exam for the course and never need to walk into that dreaded classroom! wink

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#23 - 11/18/2001 12:33 PM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Anonymous
Unregistered

Hi Lynette,

Thanks for the reply and again, sorry for sounding so negative. I certainly would NOT want to discourage any 'older' student from going back to college. Although I've had my difficulties, I would not drop out now, even if I was in class with a bunch of green spiked haired, 23 face piercings, flag burning, pot smoking, pants dragging to the knees 17 year olds!

I just try to keep focused on the class and the teacher and ignore everything else. The only thing that I HATE is when we have to form groups for assignments. All the kids flock to thier friends and I am left without a group. Then the teacher has to assign me to one.

Soooooooooo demeaning. frown

I've looked into CLEP, but the cost is half of what the class is and if you do poorly, the grade sticks. I need to maintain my 4.0 to continue to qualify for a small scholarship I was awarded. I'm afraid that if I bomb a CLEP, bye bye scholarship.

Thanks Lynette for the advice!

Neenie

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#24 - 11/18/2001 13:24 PM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Anonymous
Unregistered

I read that with some CLEP exams, the credit earned will be entered on the transcript as CLEP examinations, but will not be figured into the student's GPA.

This information from the College Board says students have the option NOT to send a score to an institution after taking the computer based test: http://www.collegeboard.org/clep/clepstud/html/stud004c.html

Also there are a lot of very good CLEP exam preparation guides and pre-tests that can help you perfect your score...

Just a thought! In any case, hang in there! It will be WELL worth it.

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#25 - 12/04/2001 07:24 AM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
redrich Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/04/2001
I am 47 years old and am in my final week at community college! Yay!

I'm so sorry to see that so many of us have had negative experiences with youth. I am somewhat surprised, because I have had absolutely no such experiences. I have really enjoyed my interactions with "the kids."

I have found that if you take an interest in what they have to say, and they do have opinions, then they are really open to what you have to say, too. I have always openly chatted with my classmates and lab partners. I treat them as my own peer (we are all students) and have found that these kids are a lot of fun to talk to and some are very bright and actually want to talk with me. I have had study sessions with them, gone to one lab partner's house and worked on a presentation with her, and another young classmate and I traded our English research papers to edit and give suggestions.

The worst thing that happens to me is walking in the classroom on the first day: everyone straightens up when they see me because they think I'm the teacher! :)

I guess I'm saying that I feel that your experience depends on the attitude you go in with. I'm going in with a sense of adventure and a genuine affection for people of all ages.

I can't wait til April! I start at my University as a Junior!

Good luck, all!
_________________________
Don't ask yourself what the world needs.
Ask yourself what makes you come alive, then go and do that.
Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.

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#26 - 12/05/2001 20:17 PM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Anonymous
Unregistered

I am 54 and in my first semester at a small midwestern all girls school. I'm having the time of my life and think this move is one of the best I've ever made! I love the younger adults and have had a lot of encouragement from them and also from my own sons and husband. I encourage anyone who is thinking of going back even at this late stage in life to "go for it"!

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#27 - 06/22/2005 11:26 AM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
Holly Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/22/2005
Loc: Dallas, TX
I'm 34 and just finishing my 3rd semester at community college. I'm sorry so many have had bad experiences in returning to college with younger people. I haven't experienced anything like that but I have to say I attend in the evenings and am working on an Associates in paralegal training, so most of us are older than the "traditional" student. I guess I would just have to reiterate what someone else said earlier, you are older and take your education very seriously so go and wreak havoc with grading curve!

Hang in there!

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#28 - 07/12/2005 07:16 AM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
jmat Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/12/2005
Loc: nyc
My mom went back to school in her early 50's and became a nurse. My sister has been back in school for 2 years trying to become a history teacher, she is almost 35. I am 30 and back in school now.

Of course, I'm a little nervous, and reading this board has made me slightly more-so. But at the same time, I have always found that being around younger people helps to keep your attitudes, style and outlook young, and that can be a great thing. Most young people have a lot of ideas that aren't weighed down by pragmatic considerations, extensive bias, or the realities they've yet to experience. I appreciate that I can see both sides and hopefully stave off the narrowing of opinions.

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#29 - 07/14/2005 19:42 PM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
schweeter Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/14/2005
Loc: Houston, Texas
Oh yes. I was feeling what you are feeling my first Semester but soon got over it. I go to class focus then leave. I have managed to make good friends from the younguns. They really surprised me. They were friendly and very open to opinions from someone older. They are often fascinated at what we know and do ask for help. Remember, these youguns do not have the experience level we have and will struggle with college at a mugh higher level than those of us who have spent some time in the real world with real jobs. Remember, you are there for a purpose. Community college is way less threatening because you don't have to live in a dorm and have the pressure of "fitting in" which is more difficult at a 4 year college. I am over my apprehension now and although it is tough to look around and not be envious of the opportunities they have in front of them that you wished you could have had back then, you will still have accomplished something great when you're done no matter what age you are. We have all been there!!! I am 37

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#30 - 07/25/2005 17:38 PM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
KLM Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/25/2005
Yes, I have been attending a community college since January. However I only had one "in person" class the others were online. I'm 34 and there were several people much older than me in the class along with many 18-20 year olds. I think there were a couple of older people because it was a foreign language class and they were interested in learning for travel rather than for the degree requirements. It was weird at first but after that I really didn't give it another thought. You are all there for the same reason!
It really helped me to go back through a community college first because I wanted to make sure this was something I really wanted to do. I work full-time and hadn't taken classes in many years. It helped me make up my mind quickly- it's hard work but it is really worth it.
Does your community college over any online courses? Our community college is excellent- the courses are offered through Blackboard which is the same system I will be using at the University I am transferring to (also distance learning). I love those classes- it really helps me set my own schedule but it takes discipline (usually older students have an advantage in this area- I know I am more disciplined now at 34 than I was at 24- but that might just be me!).

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#31 - 08/03/2005 08:20 AM Re: Has anyone gone back to community college after they turned thirty?
someguy Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/06/2005
I thought the purpose of a community college was to serve the entire community? Meaning, people of all ages. I went to a CC right after highschool and there was always a person over 30 in every one of my classes.

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