How to Keep Your New Year’s Education Resolution

Keeping New Year’s resolutions is harder than making them, especially when it comes to big life changes like returning to school for an advanced degree. According to, getting a better education is one of the most common New Year’s resolutions. To help students keep their education resolution and stay focused, Strayer University offers 12 tips for 2012.

Working adults face many demands when they return to school, but they can help achieve their goal of pursuing a degree by following these 12 tips from Strayer University’s Senior Vice Provost Dr. Tracey Lacey:

  • Be organized. Create a calendar, online or a hard copy, which includes study times, class schedule, assignment deadlines and tests to help you keep pace with classes and course work.
  • Develop realistic and obtainable goals. Identify both short- and long-term personal and professional goals. These will remind you of what you are working toward and help you keep focused on the finish line.
  • Divide and conquer. Divide up your work into manageable segments rather than trying to complete everything at one time. Consider online courses or classes that allow you to work at your own pace.
  • Create a study space. You should designate a space, either on campus or at home, to study. It will decrease distractions, keep you more focused and serve as a reminder that you are there to study.
  • Find common ground. Look for ways to make your course work relevant to your job. Think about how you can incorporate your job or industry in which you work into assignments and projects.
  • Work together. Find a small group of classmates with whom you work well. Work with this group on assignments (when permitted) or study together for tests. Participate together in student activities, clubs and workshops.
  • Use your support system. Share your struggles, successes and experiences with your friends and family. The more they understand, the more they can help push you to the finish line.
  • Know when to say “no.” School is a big commitment and you may find that you have to say no to some social or non-critical work or family obligations. Put your education first.
  • Find a mentor. It is important to connect with someone who can offer you valuable advice, such as a recent alumnus or a professor. Identify a mentor who you can go to with questions or concerns and return that favor by mentoring someone as you ascend in your career.
  • Know when to ask for help. Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you think you are running into trouble. Professors or other school administrators would rather help you before you encounter a crisis rather than when it is too late.
  • An apple a day. It is especially important for those of you who are working and going to school to take care of yourselves by eating a balanced diet and regularly exercising. Exercise and good nutrition help decrease stress and keep you healthy so you won’t miss work or classes.
  • Strike a balance. Find time to reward yourself for your hard work. Do something you enjoy on a regular basis.

“Our students are constantly juggling – work, school and their families,” said Dr. Tracey Lacey, senior vice provost, Strayer University. “We understand their demands and are committed to helping adult learners strike a balance through our academic advisors, Learning Resources Center, deans, faculty and campus community. We hope new students will keep these tips in mind as they return to school so they can keep their education resolutions and enjoy their learning experience.”

Strayer University, a leading post-secondary adult education institution, offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs and classes throughout the year. The University offers flexible class schedules, convenient campus locations and online learning opportunities to support working students.

About Strayer University
Strayer University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and has been in operation since 1892. The University offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs in business administration, accounting, information technology, human resource management, education, health services administration, public administration and criminal justice to working adult students at 92 campuses in 22 states and Washington, D.C., as well as worldwide via the Internet. Strayer University also offers an executive MBA online through its Jack Welch Management Institute. For more information, visit or call 1-888-4-STRAYER (888-478-7293).


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