Why Are Seniors Considering an Online Social Work Degree?

The idea of heading back to college as a senior citizen may seem daunting or even downright silly. According to Forbes, though, it’s becoming more common for adults over 50 to head back to school.

If you’ve always dreamed of earning a Master’s in Social Work (MSW), now is the time to enroll in an online program and make that dream come true. Furthermore, here are five reasons older adults should consider earning MSW degrees.

Contribute to Your Community

As a senior citizen, you have years of life experience behind you. Perhaps you’ve watched others in your community struggle with abuse, mental health issues, or addiction and wish that you could offer your help. Earning a degree in social work can be a great first step towards making a positive contribution to your community. You’ll be empowered to help others and make a positive impact on their lives.

Instead of simply wishing that you could share your hard-earned wisdom, you’ll find job and volunteer opportunities that allow you to do exactly that. Your clients and colleagues will benefit from the knowledge you’ve earned on your life journey. As you study, you may even want to specialize in working with a special population such as the elderly or children.

Become an Advocate

No doubt there are social causes that you’re passionate about. Earning an MSW can be a great way to turn your passion for an issue into a position as an advocate. Whether you want to fight poverty or help disabled veterans, you’ll find many opportunities to do so when you earn a social work degree.

Earning an MSW is a great way to show that you’re dedicated to making a difference. You’ll be able to use the knowledge you gain during your online program whether you end up taking a job as a social worker or becoming an unpaid advocate for others. Of course, earning your degree also lets potential bosses or volunteer coordinators know that you’re up to date with the latest practices in social work and advocacy.

Gain New Skills

No matter how old you are, you’ll gain a variety of skills as you study for an MSW. These skills will translate well into any new career position that you accept. Learning new skills can also provide an essential boost of self-confidence to seniors who feel that their skills are outdated.

Even if you don’t intend to take a professional position in social work, you’ll still be able to use these skills in your daily life. You’ll also have opportunities to use them in volunteer positions. For example, you might find yourself answering calls as a crisis line operator or speaking at a marriage conference at your local church.

Stay Connected to Others

Social workers enjoy being with others. As you study for your MSW, you’ll have the opportunity to work with individuals from many different backgrounds. This is a great way to stay connected with others and to continue to forge new friendships as you grow older.

Of course, you’ll also have opportunities to connect with others if you decide to pursue work in the field after you graduate. Social workers interact with a wide variety of people daily. Your people skills will stay sharp. Plus, you’ll avoid the loneliness that many senior citizens experience as they age and lose friends and family members.

Challenge Yourself

You know that the saying “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks” simply isn’t true. Challenging yourself to learn a new academic field is a great way to prove to the doubters that you’re still capable of learning new things. It’s also a great opportunity to inject excitement into your life if you often feel bored or restless.

Of course, challenging yourself mentally is a great way to stay sharp as you age too. Doing so supports brain health by encouraging brain cells to make connections between one another. This means that earning your MSW not only allows you to help others but also enables you to help yourself.

Heading Back to School

Embarking on a new college journey as a senior citizen doesn’t have to be intimidating. If you’re interested in learning more about MSW degrees, the first step is to start researching online programs and determine which schools will best fit your needs.

No matter your age, you’ll benefit in many ways when you go back to school.