Make Your New Year’s Resolution to Return to the Classroom


JanuaryIt’s that time of year when many of us start thinking about New Year’s resolutions. How about topping your list with this one: Earn your Master of Divinity or Master of Arts degree—online—from Northwest Nazarene University’s School of Theology & Christian Ministries.

If you’re like me, you can make a lot of excuses why you shouldn’t do something you know will be good for your life. Perhaps one or more of these excuses are running through your mind:

  1. I’ll do it later. Maybe you will. But if you wait until the eleventh hour, we may or may not have space for you just then. There’s never an ideal time, but sooner is safer than later.
  2. I can’t afford it. I’ve seen it over and over again: Where there’s a will, there are a thousand ways. Students can take more conventional routes, such as loans or NNU’s zero-interest monthly payment plans. But we also offer a limited number of scholarships. Another idea: Ask for help—from the people who love and support you, like your family or church community. Over and over again, our students find creative ways to fund their educations. One student went to his church board and together they came up with this plan: He paid for his first course. If he got an “A,” they agreed to pay for his second course. If he got a “B,” they paid 75 percent of his tuition; 50 percent for a “C,” and so on. That was the plan throughout his studies. Guess what? He got straight A’s throughout the program!
  3. The time isn’t right for my family. “I’ll wait for my kids to finish college,” etc. While I understand this one, I can tell you I have seen our students inspire their children to take their college education more seriously. When they see you doing it, it empowers them to recognize they can do it, too.
  4. I don’t have the time. Sorry, but the truth is you can find the time. Every one of us has 24 hours in a day. You might have to give up your bowling league or fantasy football or your book club or time watching your favorite TV shows. Maybe there’s something in your life you know you need to give up. You just needed a good excuse. Pursuing a master’s degree is one of the greatest excuses you could imagine.
  5. I’m not good with computers. You don’t have to be a computer programmer versed in coding to be an online student at NNU. If you can get on Facebook and send an email, you can make it fine.
  6. I don’t know what the future holds. True. Who does? Maybe you’re thinking about moving. The great thing about our fully online, non-residential program is that it’s portable. Even if you move across the country—or around the world—you won’t miss a beat when it comes to keeping on track with your studies.

Do you have others? Think them through. Likely you’ll see they really are just excuses. Or email me and I’ll help you through.

One more thought: Remember, for thousands of years God has shown us that God finds ways for us when there seems to be no way. As people of faith, that should not surprise us, but sometimes we need that reminder.

Jay Akkerman

Jay Akkerman

I also invite you to RSVP for a live interactive web chat with me this Friday, December 6, at 11 a.m. (MST). Together, let’s explore your options. You likely have more than you imagine!

And just think—if earning your online degree at NNU is your New Year’s resolution, then you can forget the one about losing weight!

- Jay Akkerman

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