Author Topic: How to fund a second degree  (Read 1593 times)

robbbto

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How to fund a second degree
« on: April 01, 2017, 06:54:41 PM »
Hi,

Just wondering if anyone has any tip on funding a second degree in the UK.

Straight out of school I got a BA in Theology & Music and for the last 4 years have been working as an Audio Visual Tech and now at a major law firm in the city. I really love software development and want to retrain in computer science. But Im 25 will be 26 in September and already used Student finance for my first degree. So I don't qualify for any traditional loans or funding. I also have a wife so can't just go hardcore and live in a tent for three years or move back in with the parents.

At the moment I'm looking at evening classes whilst retaining my job, even still I don't know how to raise the 10k a year needed for this. Does anyone have any tips or advise on how I may go about this?

Thank you :)

Goldielocks

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Re: How to fund a second degree
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2017, 12:33:44 AM »
You have income and a credit history -- can't you get a loan for the amount needed?   e.g., a personal loan?

dreams_and_discoveries

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Re: How to fund a second degree
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2017, 05:13:47 AM »
My honest advice would be to think twice about the degree.

If you want to learn software development, that's easy to do for free, plenty of MOOCs (free online courses) at places such as edX and Coursera, and the library will be stocked with books.

Your law office will probably have a tech dept right? Start hanging with them and ask questions. If they are shorthanded, offer to help. Do they do e-discovery?  Lots of opportunities to learn about the IT world there.

If you really want to do another degree, why don't you wait and save for it? How much could you save a year? As a last option there is borrowing the money...

chasesfish

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Re: How to fund a second degree
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2017, 05:22:54 AM »
Go get a job at the University

Goldielocks

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Re: How to fund a second degree
« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2017, 02:17:21 AM »
Go get a job at the University
Doesn't work that way here.  I teach PT and still don't get a discount on classes.

independence

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Re: How to fund a second degree
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2017, 04:33:34 AM »
Some universities offer scholarships for second degrees but they're hard to find and probably wouldn't cover the full balance.

Have you looked at the Open University? They offer payment plans, etc. and you could go less than full-time to be able to afford it. It'd take longer, but it'd work.

Then there's the alternative routes. Learn to code yourself (lots of good resources online) or maybe look at a programming bootcamp. I don't know how common/respected bootcamps are here in the UK though.

I think only needing 10k/year is a huge understatement if you'll need to contribute to your household too. Tuition fees are 9250 for a lot of unis now and there's books, etc on top of that. Would your wife be supporting you with her employment?

plog

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Re: How to fund a second degree
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2017, 07:00:10 AM »
Back in Internet Boom 1.0 employers snatched up everyone with a computer degree for a lot of money and have since learned their lesson:  A computer science degree isn't ipso facto proof of a competent coder.  A degree is an indicator, but not something they blindly trust any more.  That's a good thing--computer programming jobs do not require a degree; they require demonstratable skills.

You can obtain those skills on your own.  My advice would be to make friends with computer guys at your current job and find out what types of things they do.  Then work on your own to acquire skills that let you do those sorts of things.  Next, go back to your friends and offer to help out on anything they might need, even if its boring and monotonous (especially if its boring and monotonous because they will be willing to outsource that to you).  As soon as they do--boom--you have professional experience as a computer programmer in your current role and can put it on your resume.

Case

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Re: How to fund a second degree
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2017, 08:37:49 AM »
Back in Internet Boom 1.0 employers snatched up everyone with a computer degree for a lot of money and have since learned their lesson:  A computer science degree isn't ipso facto proof of a competent coder.  A degree is an indicator, but not something they blindly trust any more.  That's a good thing--computer programming jobs do not require a degree; they require demonstratable skills.

You can obtain those skills on your own.  My advice would be to make friends with computer guys at your current job and find out what types of things they do.  Then work on your own to acquire skills that let you do those sorts of things.  Next, go back to your friends and offer to help out on anything they might need, even if its boring and monotonous (especially if its boring and monotonous because they will be willing to outsource that to you).  As soon as they do--boom--you have professional experience as a computer programmer in your current role and can put it on your resume.

Second this.  Additional schooling and loans are expensive and will delay FIRE.
Better to get second hand training or self-training, and find jobs that overlap your current skill set with programming.

I know at least one person that took a 10 week crash course on programming and with it alone landed a high paying programming job in the SF bay area.

Greystache

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Re: How to fund a second degree
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2017, 10:02:41 AM »
My employer financed my masters degree. There were some strings attached. If I quit within 18 mos. of receiving the degree, I was liable for some of the cost. If I failed to meet a certain grade point average, the would not pay. My employer's tuition credit was taxed as income. Overall, it was a pretty good deal.  This type of arrangement was pretty common in the American aerospace industry when I was working.  Don't know how common it might be in the UK.

ausername

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Re: How to fund a second degree
« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2017, 12:44:51 PM »
https://www.kent.ac.uk/careers/workin/computing.htm

As per the above link, could you get a job with an employer who employs grads in any subject without IT qualifications to work in IT? Alernatively could you do a conversion course? I work in IT and think a second degree is unnecessary.

robbbto

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Re: How to fund a second degree
« Reply #10 on: April 04, 2017, 03:38:40 PM »
Hi All,

Thank you all for the advice. Yes the no degree route is what other people have been telling me recently, its reaffirming the community agrees. It just hard to get people to even look at you without proof of ability.

Great link, thank you ausername!