Do you already have a college degree? Are you looking to enhance your career skills? Today, the answer to build-out your resume and increase your knowledge is to get a certificate. You don’t need to enroll in a lengthy or costly master’s degree program, or even get another bachelor’s degree, to get noticed. A university-level certificate program can meet the needs of what you’re looking for at a pace and cost that is closer to your goals.
According to the American Institutes for Research®, certificate programs are on the rise in U.S. colleges. The higher costs of a four-year degree and current job market make getting a certificate program a better alternative, because “they are much more focused on the skills and they can be much cheaper than even associates degrees from community colleges."
Why Should You Enroll in a Certificate Program?
There are many reasons to enroll in a certificate program, even if you already have a college degree, from getting a specific skill set to showing potential employers that you stay current with your knowledge. Do any of the following apply to you?
“I have an existing college degree, but… “
· “I want to enhance my existing skills”
· “I want to learn entirely new job skills”
· “I want to build out my resume”
· “I want to demonstrate to potential employers my ability to stay up-to-date and current with my skills”
If you identify with one or more of the aforementioned statements, you may benefit from a short-term, affordable certificate program.
How Will You Benefit from a Certificate Program?
Now that you’ve determined that a certificate program may be for you, let’s look at the advantages of certificates versus degrees. As a working professional, you‘ll likely identify with these reasons, which range from the completion time to acquisition of specialized knowledge. Here’s how a certificate program can meet your education needs, in a manner that fits with your goals, and outweigh the benefits of graduate degrees:
1) Finish much faster – A certificate program can be a quicker way to learn new skills and takes a fraction of the time needed to obtain a bachelor’s or graduate degree. With anywhere from five to seven courses, a certificate can be completed in as little as six months. Plus, you can often transfer in credits and/or test out of something that you already know making it even quicker!
2) Pay significantly less – With a certificate program costing much less than a degree, you don’t have to spend as much of your hard-earned money on advancing your education. In fact, certificates are a fraction of the cost of degrees programs. It’s a cost-effective way to get more education, while being mindful of your bottom line and without accruing unnecessary debt.
3) Advance your career – If you’re looking to advance in your current position, you will benefit from a fresh set of skills, which can take your knowledge to the next level. Prove your value to your employer by rounding out your abilities. This can open the door to an opportunity within your existing organization, lead to a promotion, or forge the path to a whole new career. It’s the ideal way to complement what you already know with new, in-demand skills!
4) Build your resume – Is your last academic achievement years ago? Enrolling in a certificate program can provide you with updated skills and credentials. Imagine adding fresh, up-to-date skills to your resume, allowing you to put your best foot forward. This can give you an edge when a potential employer has to decide between you and another candidate for a job.
5) Increase your income potential – When you gain new career skills, you increase your value as an employee. Whether this leads to a new position or added duties within your existing position, you will have the opportunity to explore new opportunities, which may lead to more money. When you combine the cost of getting a certificate program with the potential payoff, it makes perfect sense to choose this education option!
6) Get specialized education – While a degree covers more general areas of study, a certificate program hones in on specific areas and skills. This means you can pinpoint exactly what you want to learn and gain a specialized skill-set. The education from a certificate program translates directly to on-the-job knowledge, meaning you can directly apply what you learn.
As you can see, a certificate program can be an ideal complement to your existing degree when you are looking for career-specific education. When you factor in the money and time spent on a certificate program and the potential result on your career, it makes sense to dedicate your time and money to a solution that will pay off for you. In fact, with the American Institutes for Research® citing that “some short-term, higher education credentials are worth as much as long-term ones,” you should consider this education option if you’re looking for professional advancement.
If you already have a degree and want to further pursue your educational endeavors, you should consider a specialized certificate program. Not only will you gain career-specific skills, you will gain a distinct career advantage – a win-win for your future! Call (888) 384-0849 today to learn what certificate programs are available and how they can add in-demand skills to your career.