Dear Dr. Faizal,

I need advice with regard to my career as I have to choose between schooling or jobs at this moment. I endeavour to successfully complete a study program by October 2019. Currently, I’m in dilemma about my job situation. I have a few good job offers but cannot take them as the time conflicts with my school. This is a very sweet offer and I believe I won’t get an offer like this again. Please advise.

– Study or Work

Dear Study or Work,

The way I view your situation, you have two options, both of which could lead to positive results. Unfortunately, since you can’t have your cake and eat it too, you are forced to choose only one.

Choosing between two good options is not always easy. What I see is that there is a competition between an employment offer and the study program you are enrolled in. Perhaps I’m missing something here, but I think most people enrol in an education program either to start a career or change careers. If you are getting offers from employers, I can guess you fall in the latter category. If this is true, you need to assess why you want to change careers and if the “sweet” offer (I’m presuming you mean financially) is enough of a motivator to remain in that career.

You need to evaluate what your needs are at this time in your life. What would you benefit most from – income or education? Sometimes people make difficult decisions based on their instincts. To help you make up your mind, you could consider these questions: Do I have enough funds saved up to carry me to October 2019? Am I enjoying the program I’m taking? If I’m enjoying the program, can I see myself enjoying working in my new career field? If you answered ‘yes’ to these questions, it seems that your heart has made the choice.

Choosing education doesn’t necessarily mean you are sacrificing your bank book; in fact, numerous recent studies have revealed that those who are higher educated earn more income – in the long run – than those who pursue a career instead to attending school. In this sense, your earning potential would probably be greater after you complete this program.

Ultimately, in looking at your situation pragmatically, I see your job offer as a short-term gain, but not a long-term solution. Sure, by taking the “sweet” deal, you may be financially privileged – but for how long? As you are aware, no job is guaranteed, and your job may be taken away from you with little notice, leaving you without income and without education. On the other hand, as I see it, acquiring education provides long-term gain; it is an investment in your future (through which you can develop financially and as a person), something that no one can ever take away from you.

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