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  • Continuing Education and Your Career

    Do you ever feel like your career has stalled out? Do you see other people getting promoted while you're always passed by?
    Maybe continuing education can help you jump-start your career. By taking additional courses and investing time and energy
    in your skills, you can show your employer how serious you are about your future.

    One of the wonderful things about continuing education is that everyone can profit from it. Learning additional skills and
    mastering new knowledge helps everyone. Employees who feel left behind in their careers can especially profit from learning
    skills that will make them infinitely more "promotable." Upper management often looks at continuing education classes as a
    sign that the employee is interested in his or her future.

    So if you want to get your career moving, consider your continuing education options. First, analyze the state of your
    career. What goals do you have for yourself? What do you hope to achieve during the next year and the next five years? Is
    your current employer your dream job or do you hope to develop skills that will enable you to move to the job you really
    want? What skills and training do you feel you're missing?

    Make a list of what you want to accomplish in your career. Then look at how learning additional skills can help you
    accomplish these goals. Continuing education encompasses a great many topics. You can learn almost any skill that you
    need in the workplace by pursuing continuing education options.

    If you're comfortable doing so, talk to your manager about continuing education classes. Many companies actively encourage
    their employees to learn new skills. Moreover, many companies will pay all or part of the cost of classes. Sit with your
    manager and decide what classes will most help you progress in your career.

    If you would rather not ask your employer about continuing education, then study the training that successful people in
    your field have. Do they have advanced degrees? If so, then you can return to college. Are their technical skills stronger
    or more diverse? You can put together a list of the skills you need to develop.

    Once you've decided which classes will benefit your career, research your continuing education options. In addition to
    college classes, you can take many classes online. You'll be able to fit in classes around your busy work schedule. Not
    only can you find a variety of classes online, you'll also find a variety of prices as well. Look around until you find a
    program that fits your budget.

    In addition to online classes, many training programs offer DVDs and CDs. Some people use the time while they are stuck in
    traffic to learn a new skill. Several programs are available on CD that you can listen to while you drive. These programs
    can help you with people skills such as public speaking.

    With a little research, you can find lots of continuing education offerings to help you progress in your career. Take the
    time necessary to map out a plan, and then make it happen. Your future is in your control. Take charge and find the
    training you need.