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(Re)Enrolling in college as an adult may be more difficult due to various factors. Adult learners face time constraints with work, family, and personal obligations, making it challenging to balance their responsibilities with coursework. Financial considerations, such as supporting a family or existing financial commitments, can limit their options and require them to continue working while studying.  Despite these obstacles, adult learners can successfully transition to the classroom and college campuses with the support of educational institutions.

Study Group
Girl in Wheelchair
Girl in Wheelchair

Student Experience

Support services and a sense of belonging are crucial aspects of the student experience for adult learners in college.  Access to resources such as career counseling, academic advising, financial aid assistance, and mental health support can greatly aid their success and well-being. Additionally, fostering a sense of community and belonging is important for adult learners who may be older than their peers. By prioritizing support services and fostering a sense of belonging, colleges and universities can provide adult learners with the necessary tools to thrive academically and personally.

Career Congruence

Adult learners often return to college with specific career goals in mind. By aligning their education with current industry trends and demands, colleges can equip adult learners with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in their chosen fields. Additionally, adult learners may have work experience and existing skill sets that can be enhanced and complemented through their college education. By offering programs and courses that are relevant to their career aspirations, colleges can bridge the gap between their prior experience and current industry requirements. Ensuring career relevancy increases the likelihood of successful career transitions or advancements for adult learners, contributing to their overall professional growth and satisfaction.

Engineers at work
A business meeting

Campus & Community Partnerships

Urban universities exist within dynamic and diverse urban environments, and community partnerships allow them to engage with and address the needs of the local community. Collaborating with community organizations, businesses, government entities, and residents enables universities to develop programs and initiatives that have a direct and positive impact on the community. Partnerships foster a sense of shared responsibility and collective action, as universities and the community collaborate to address social, economic, and environmental issues, leading to the overall betterment of the urban environment and the well-being of its residents.

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