Yippee! High school graduation is just around the corner and school will finally be a thing of the past, right?
Well, not exactly. Not for most people, anyway.
Instead, we'll embark on career paths that will likely require continuing education in one fashion or another. And we may choose to continue education by going to college or a trade or technical school before actually jumping into the workforce.
Continuing education takes on many guises. It can be formalized, as in the form of an associate's or bachelor's degree. We can continue those studies and earn a master's or doctorate degree, too.
Or we can choose continuing education as a means of learning a craft or skill from which we can launch a career. Many trades are learned on the job but sometimes starting a new job with a little knowledge and practical experience brings better pay.
Even finishing one of these advanced levels of continuing education is no guarantee that time in a classroom will become a sure thing of the past. Many positions require continuing education as a step toward promotions and other types of career advancements.
Many people hold jobs that require licensing. Usually, license requirements are established in the state which grants the license. In most disciplines, as well as in most states, continuing education requirements are a necessity to get a license renewed.
Rapidly changing technological advances that drive many industries today are another reason to expect continuing education even after becoming well embedded in a career path. The only way to stay on the forefront of an industry is to maintain an education of all the aspects of the industry.
Continuing education is the key.
And once all the job-related reasons for continuing education are satisfied, sometimes it's just plain fun. Many of us hold jobs that require a great deal of focus on one aspect of our personalities while another aspect is neglected.
It's quite possible to enroll in continuing education courses just for the fun of it. For example, an accountant may work with numbers, theories, and other very precise procedures on the job but enjoys painting or sculpture as a means of enjoying life to a fuller extent.
And our personalities and preferences change over the course of our lives, too. What was interesting at the age of 20 isn't always still interesting at 40 or 50.
Continuing education courses offer a way to learn as we mature and keep life interesting.
Yes, it's a big and welcome relief to finally graduate from high school. It's quite a rewarding milestone in life. Unfortunately, it's almost never a license to stop continuing education.