No matter your age, you’re never too old to learn. For those that are age 55+, it can actually be the best time of your life going back to school. Your kids have grown up, flown the coop, and you may even be semi or fully retired — all giving you more time to dedicate towards educational endeavors. The benefits are many, including:
Boosts brain power
Learning creates new brain cells and neural connections. By discovering and trying out classes and engaging in new experiences, you’re exercising your mind. In the process, your brain learns (and remembers) valuable techniques for improving your mental wellness, problem-solving, and cognitive skills. Consider it fitness, but more for your mind.
Increases memory function
According to the Association for Psychological Science, older adults who learn new skills have shown better memory improvement than those who take part in less challenging tasks and activities. The habits of regularly going to classes, being mentally active, and learning new subject matter all help to keep your memory sharp. Young or “young at heart,” schooling is an excellent way to make your mind a well-oiled machine.
Build new social connections
Going to school and interacting with teachers and classmates not only expands your network of friends and peers, but it also helps to eliminate any feelings of social isolation or loneliness. It’s especially pleasing to meet new people of all ages who share the same interests as you.
Embark on a new career
Often called re-entry or encore careers, many that are age 55+ go back to school to retool for a new profession. At that age, gaining certificates and degrees might seem a bit challenging, but people are doing it every day. For many, it has proven to be an incredibly rewarding endeavor, either personally or financially (or both.)
Better job prospects
With the right education, job opportunities can expand for those 55+. It’s is especially true for those who aren’t retired yet. Increasing your skill set can help you get an edge at work as you’ll have the most up-to-date and relevant experience required to attain your professional goals. These include entry into a new field, obtaining a promotion, making yourself more valuable in the workplace, or getting a well-deserved raise.
Pursue a new passion
Maybe you’ve always wanted to learn how to speak French, make jewelry, explore your genealogy, publish a book, or create a website. Whatever your passion project, you’ll experience joy in the process of learning and gaining expertise in your field of choice. Even better, you may discover a new side-hustle that could potentially generate a little extra spending money during retirement.
Offers a sense of accomplishment
Those who take the time and effort to go back to school gain respect from their family, friends, and peers. Whether going back to school to get a degree, certificate, or just to learn something new for personal growth, it’s gratifying to successfully complete a course. The pride you gain from the sense of accomplishment is well-deserved.
The lifestyle at Soleil meshes well with those who enjoy continuing education. Here, we know that learning never comes with age restrictions. Schooling of any kind is good for the mind, body, and soul. Besides the fun classes we offer here, we are also fortunate to have the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) conveniently located at nearby Kennesaw State University. For those age 50+, OLLI offers courses that cover everything from personal computers to the visual arts. So why not make plans to stop by and learn about Soleil today? See if we make the grade. You’ll quickly notice that we’re always shooting for an A+.