William Hung just hit minute 16.
The tone-challenged warbler from American Idol's (NWS) 2004 season three, who shot to infamy belting Ricky Martin’s "She Bang’s," has officially abandoned dreams his music career. Instead he's going back to college to become a teacher.
Hung recently enrolled at California State University, Northridge to complete a double Bachelors degree in mathematics and education. He even told his new college’s student newspaper, the Daily Sundial, "I think teaching is more exciting. I get to learn and teach something new everyday."
Are you heading back to school? Whether to pursue a new career path or to continue education in your professional field, heading back to school can be a challenge for many adults. Financing education is hard at any point in life but especially so when the student is must leave the work world and especially if they have a family to support.
Some people continue to work while they attend school at night and are able to have their education paid for by their employer, in which case they have to budget their time more so than their money. Others continue to work but must pay for the schooling themselves. And, finally those who may have the hardest time financing their return to the classroom are the people who stop working and go back to school fulltime.
Stuart Ritter, a certified financial planner with T. Rowe Price (TROW) says that the double hit of loosing a salary and a substantial increase in expenses can be difficult but it is doable. "Saving ahead of time and cutting expenses are key," he says. (And while the financial strain may be less for those who are still employed while taking class, the same is true for them, too.)
Ritter says that to prepare for the cost of education it is helpful for people scale back their budget before they make the commitment to school. This lifestyle adjustment will ensure that they are also willing to make a new financial commitment to themselves. "Whether it's paying the total cost up-front or borrowing the money, and then needing to fund the monthly loan payment, do this for several months ahead of time," says Ritter. "You’ll learn whether you really ready to make it through the whole program and, you'll have saved money ahead of time, easing the burden."