If you are an adult standing on that precipice of “career change,” staring across the dark chasm to the other side, know this: The gap is not as wide and scary as it appears. Knowing your landing spot and conquering your anxiety are the keys.

Often, career change means more education. But before choosing a school, schedules, tuition and coursework, you need to know your goal. Mark Meyers, dean of the College of Social Sciences, Health and Education at Xavier University, says many people don’t treat the concept as seriously as they should.

“It’s too important of a decision to jump and then figure out where you are landing while in the air,” Meyers says. “I can’t overemphasize enough the importance of talking with people before making a decision about the pathway to walk.”

That means consulting with teachers, students and professionals to get a concrete understanding of what the career entails. Meyers cites nursing and education as prime examples of careers that people target without fully understanding what they’re up against.

“Some people know they want to go into health care. But there are a lot of variations,” Meyers says. “And some people say, ‘I’ve got a degree in ‘x,’ I can go teach it.’ Well, do you want to teach the very young, preschool to kindergarten or elementary age children, or middle and high schools?

“Decide what your mind-set is, then choose. The goal isn’t just to get another degree. The goal is to have a new
professional journey.”

The challenge of returning to school can be a big mental obstacle for adults.

“It’s petrifying at certain levels,” says Andrew Voegel, Associate Director of Graduate Admissions at the University of Cincinnati. A frequent question he hears is, “Will I be studying with 20-year-olds?”

But these aren’t the educational institutions of your college days. They have evolved to serve a growing adult student body, with programs specifically geared for adults, often offering degree completion times of as little as one year, only one night per week. Some include: UC’s accelerated Masters of Business Administration program or Back to Business program, a “mini-MBA”; Xavier’s MIDAS program, a Master of Science in Nursing designed for those who already have a bachelor’s degree in a discipline other than nursing who wish to be a licensed registered nurse; Thomas More College’s TAP program, which helps adults earn a bachelor’s or MBA while working full-time.

“If you’re trying to go back to school, it is difficult to get started,” said Voegel, who recruits for UC’s MBA program. “But it’s not difficult once you get going. If a person has anxiety, they can come to talk to us. We’re happy to do what we can for them.”

There are also associate degrees and vocational schools, often cheaper and faster. Associate degrees in Physical Therapist Assisting or IT fields can pay nice dividends. Vocational schools often are piped into local industry to land a job immediately through co-ops. The key is to choose a career that is big or growing.

“We don’t want to turn out widget turners if there are no jobs for widget turners,” said Peg Allen, public information specialist at the Warren County Career Center.

The next step is to make an appointment with an advisor or admissions official to get the ball rolling. Find out the basics: deadlines for applications; tests required, such as the GMAT and GRE; estimated time to finish; total cost; whether to go full-time or part-time; financial aid; and other questions.

“Adults who are changing careers are willing to invest the time, effort and money if they can see the result at the other end,” Meyers said. 

Get important information about Tristate educational programs below.

Art Institute of Cincinnati
1171 E. Kemper Road, Cincinnati, OH 45246
(513) 751-1206 • www.aic-arts.edu

Associate degree programs: 1
Cost: Full-time, $20,110 per year including books, supplies and fees
Financial aid: Title IV Grants, loans and scholarships
Application deadline for next enrollment: Sept. 10
Overall students: Limit 100; presently 75
Non-traditional adult working students: 15 percent
Heavy online or online-only options: No.
Average time to complete programs: 22 months.
Faculty: 8 full-time, 4 part-time
Job placement help offered: Yes.

Art Institute of Ohio — Cincinnati
8845 Governor’s Hill Drive, Cincinnati, OH 45249
(513) 833-2400 •
www.artinstitutes.edu/cincinnati
Bachelor degree programs: 8
Associate degree programs: 6
Certificate programs: 1
Cost: $29,888 (16 credits/quarter) per year. Excludes starting kit (varies by program).
Financial aid: Federal or state aid, private loans, grants, scholarships, military benefits and others.
Application deadline for next enrollment: Rolling enrollment. Spring quarter begins April 5.
Overall students: 713
Non-traditional adult working students: Approximately 34 percent of the student body is age 24 or over.
Heavy online or online-only options: No. There are limited online options for each program.
Average time to complete programs: Four quarters for diploma program (one year full-time); six quarters for associate’s programs (18 months full-time); 12 quarters for bachelor’s programs (three years full-time)
Faculty: 26 full-time and 18 adjunct
Job placement help offered: Yes

Beckfield College
16 Spiral Dr., Florence, KY 41017
(859) 371-9393 • www.beckfield.edu
225 Pictoria Dr., Suite 200, Springdale, OH 45246
(513) 671-1920 • www.beckfield.edu (Tri-County)

Bachelor degree programs: 5
Associate degree programs: 9
Certificate programs: 1
Diploma programs: 4
Cost: $290 per credit hour
Financial Aid: Loans, grants
Application deadline for next enrollment: Rolling based on program and student needs
Overall students: 1,100
Average time to complete programs: Varies
Faculty: 103 full and part time
Job placement help offered: Yes

Butler Technology and Career Development Schools
3603 Hamilton Middletown Road, Hamilton, OH 45011
(513) 645-8205 •
www.butlertech.org
Certificate programs: 10
Cost: Range is $5,225-$13,000 per year
Financial aid: Pell grant, Stafford loan, PLUS loan, scholarships, agency funding
Application deadline for next enrollment: 3-6 months before start of program for Practical Nursing; two weeks for remaining programs
Overall students: 795 full-time; 13,269 part-time/special interest
Heavy online or online-only options: No
Average time to complete programs: 4-12 months
Faculty: 280
Job placement help offered: Yes

Cincinnati Christian University
2700 Glenway Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45204
(513) 244-8426 •
www.ccuniversity.edu
Graduate degree programs: 3
Bachelor degree programs: 7
Associate degree programs: 8
Certificate programs: 2
Cost: College of Adult Learning, $11,000 per year; Undergraduate, $13,600 per year; graduate, $9,000-$12,500 per year.
Financial aid: Federal aid, state aid, merit and need-based institutional aid
Application deadline: College of Adult Learning - March 1; Cincinnati Bible College - Dec. 15; Cincinnati Bible Seminary - None.
Overall students: 1,069
Graduate students: 226
Non-traditional adult working students: 317
Online learning options: Yes. 20 online graduate level courses available.
Number of online-only students: 0
Average time to complete program: Varies
Faculty: 37
Job placement help offered: Yes

University of Cincinnati
2600 Clifton Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45221
513) 556-1100 • www.uc.edu

Graduate degree programs: 156
Bachelor degree programs: 103
Associate degree programs: 49
Cost: Tuition, $9,399 per year undergraduate; $12,723, graduate; and Pharmacy, $19,942
Financial aid: Varies
Application deadline for next enrollment: Rolling admissions for many programs
Overall students: 39,667
Graduate students: 9,250
Non-traditional adult working students: 24 percent are older than 25.

Heavy online or online-only options: Yes
Average time to complete programs: Varies
Faculty: 5,699
Job placement help offered: Yes

University of Cincinnati — Clermont College
4200 Clermont College Drive, Batavia, OH 45103
(513) 732-5200 •
www.clc.uc.edu
Bachelor degree programs: 6
Associate degree programs: 39
Certificate programs: 23
Cost: $1,514 per quarter
Financial aid: Loans, grants, co-op
Application deadline for next enrollment: Rolling admissions policy
Overall students: 3,713
Average time to complete programs: Varies
Faculty: 82 full-time, almost 260 part-time
Job placement help offered: Yes

University of Cincinnati – Raymond Walters College
9555 Plainfield Road, Cincinnati, OH 45236
(513) 745-5600 •
www.rwc.uc.edu
Bachelor degree programs: 1
Associate degree programs: 67
Certificate programs: 18
Cost: $1,744 per quarter
Financial aid: Loans, grants, co-op
Application deadline for next enrollment: Rolling admissions policy
Overall students: 4,257
Non-traditional adult working students: Nearly 75 percent work
Average time to complete programs: Varies
Faculty: Full-time 161, roughly 145 part-time
Job placement help offered: Yes

Cincinnati State Technical and Community College
3520 Central Parkway, Cincinnati, OH 45223
(513) 861-7700 •
www.cincinnatistate.edu
Associate degree programs: 75
Certificate programs: 66
Cost: $4,411 per year
Financial aid: Federal, state, institutional scholarships
Application deadline for next enrollment: Spring term suggested application deadline is March 15.
Overall students: 10,165 in Fall 2009
Non-traditional adult working students: 60 percent are 23 and older; average age is 27
Heavy online or online-only options: Yes
Average time to complete programs: 3.5 years
Faculty: 185 full-time

DeVry University
8800 Governor’s Hill Drive, Cincinnati, OH 45249
(513) 583-5000 • www.keller.edu

Graduate degree programs: 7
Bachelor degree programs: 5
Associate degree programs: 1
Cost: $330-$570/credit hour. Keller Graduate School of Management, $1,995/course.
Overall students: 65,000 across 90 locations
Heavy online or online-only options: Yes
Job placement help offered: Yes


Gateway Community and Technical College
1025 Amsterdam Road, Covington, KY 41011
(859) 441-4500 •
www.gateway.kcts.edu
Associate degree programs: 30 programs of study, 23 of which offer an Associate in Arts, Associate in Science or Associate in Applied Science degree.
Certificate programs: More than 80 in 25 different programs
Cost: $125 per credit hour
Non-traditional adult working students: 91 percent have indicated they intend to work while going to school.
Faculty: Approximately 80 full-time and 175 adjunct
Job placement help offered: Yes

Great Oaks Career Campuses
3254 E. Kemper Road, Cincinnati, OH 45241
(513) 771-8925 •
www.greatoaks.com/adult
Associate degree programs: 1
Certificate programs: 11
Cost: For total tuition, books, tools, etc.: Auto Collision, $7,600; Aviation Maintenance, $15,200; Electro-mechanical Maintenance, $7,020; Fire and Emergency Rescue, $6,000; HVAC, $7,760; Industrial Diesel, $7,800; Medical Office, $7,469; Plumbing, $7,550; Police, $5,050; Welding, $7,400.
Financial aid: Available for all full-time program offerings
Application deadline for next enrollment: Aug. 1
Overall students: 24 per program
Heavy online or online-only options: No
Average time to complete programs: 900 hours
Faculty: 1 full-time per program; additional faculty accessed for content specific areas.
Job placement help offered: Yes.

Indiana Wesleyan University — Cincinnati
9286 Schulze Drive, West Chester, OH 45069
(513) 881-3601 or (800) 498-4968 •
www.indwes.edu
Graduate degree programs: 3
Bachelor degree programs: 6
Associate degree programs: 1
Certificate programs: None onsite. There are online certificate programs available in Communication, Criminal Justice, Human Services, and Religious Studies.
Cost: Average total, $15,000-$22,000
Financial aid: Stafford Loans, Pell Grants, tuition assistance from selected companies
Application deadline for next enrollment: Continuing enrollment
Overall students: Approximately 500
Graduate students: Approximately 150
Non-traditional adult working students: Programs are designed for working adults. All students would be considered non-traditional adult working students.
Heavy online or online-only options: Yes
Average time to complete programs: Approximately 20-24 months
Faculty: Approximately 200
Job placement help offered: No

Kaplan College
801 Linn St., Cincinnati, OH 45203
513-421-9900 •
www.cincinnati.kaplancollege.com
Associate degree programs: 2
Most popular associate degree program: Criminal Justice
Certificate programs: 3
Cost: Medical Assistant, $14,570 (nine months); Medical Billing and Coding, $14,885 (nine months); Electrical Technician, $18,900 (12 months); Health information Technology Associate Degree, $29,570 (two years); Criminal Justice Associate Degree, $29,695 (two years).
Financial aid: Available for those who qualify
Application deadline for next enrollment: New classes start monthly/quarterly
Overall students: 520
Non-traditional adult working students: 520
Heavy online or online-only options: No
Average time to complete programs: 9-18 months
Faculty: 26
Job placement help offered: Available to students and alumni

Miami University
501 E. High St., Oxford, OH 45056
(513) 529-2531 •
www.miami.muohio.edu
Graduate degree programs: 80
Bachelor degree programs: More than 100
Associate degree programs: 20. Through regional campuses
Certificate programs: 7. Through regional campuses
Cost: $12,420, plus $1,390 (books and supplies) per year
Financial aid: Direct Subsidized Stafford Loans, Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loans, Direct PLUS Loans, Federal Perkins Loans, Federal Nursing Loans, loans from Miami University, Bank Education loans, Federal Pell Grants, SEOG, State scholarships/grants, Private Scholarships, scholarships and grant aid from Miami.
Application deadline for next enrollment: Transfer students – May 1 for summer or fall 2010; First-time students – approximately Dec. 1 for Spring 2011.
Overall students: 16,884
Graduate students: 2,213
Non-traditional adult working students: N/A
Heavy online or online-only options: No
Average time to complete programs: Median time is 3.7 years.
Faculty: 1,118
Job placement help offered: Yes

Miami University — Hamilton
1601 University Blvd., Hamilton, OH 45011
(513) 785-3111 •
www.ham.muohio.edu
Bachelor degree programs: 3
Associate degree programs: 7
Certificate programs: 12
Cost: Lower division (students who have earned less than 68 semester credit hours), $2,175 per semester. Upper division, $3,294. (Add $300-$1,000 per year for books).
Financial aid: About half of the students receive some sort of financial assistance.
Application deadline for next enrollment: Last date for summer is June 1. For Fall, Aug. 16.
Overall students: 4,401 (Spring 2010)
Graduate students: 0
Non-traditional adult working students: 35 percent are 25 or older.
Heavy online or online-only options: Each of Miami’s regional campuses is offering 30 online classes this semester.
Average time to complete programs: Average student is on campus for six semesters.
Faculty: 109
Job placement help offered: Yes

Miami University — Middletown
4200 E. University Blvd., Middletown, OH 45042
(513) 727-3200 •
www.mid.muohio.edu
Bachelor degree programs: 3
Associate degree programs: 7
Certificate programs: 12
Cost: Lower division (students who have earned less than 68 semester credit hours), $2,175/semester. Upper division, $3,294. (Add $300-$1,000/year for books).
Financial aid: About half of students receive some sort of financial assistance. Many are eligible for scholarships and awards based on need and/or merit. Aid packages are often combinations of grants, loans and work-study.
Application deadline for next enrollment: Last date for summer is June 1. For Fall, Aug. 16.
Overall students: 2,902 (Spring 2010).
Graduate students: See Miami University - Voice of America Learning Center
Non-traditional adult working students: 36 percent are 25 or older.
Heavy online or online-only options: Each of Miami’s regional campuses is offering 30 online classes this semester.
Average time to complete programs: Average student is on campus for 8.6 semesters.
Faculty: 93
Job placement help offered: Yes

Miami University — Voice of America Learning Center
7847 VOA Park Drive, West Chester, OH 45069
(513) 895-8862 •
www.muohio.edu/voalc
Graduate degree programs: 2
Cost: Same as other regional campuses (above)
Financial aid: A special program for area educators pursuing graduate degrees, Miami TEAM (Teacher Education Access at Miami) Scholarship, provides 50 percent tuition and fees to eligible participants.
Application deadline for next enrollment: Graduate programs vary depending on division and degree intention. Professional MBA program utilizes cohort approach; each new cohort begins in fall.
Overall students: 553
Graduate students: 178, including 33 in Professional MBA program and 145 pursuing graduate degrees in Education
Faculty: VOALC has no resident faculty – courses are scheduled and staffed by Miami Regionals (undergraduate) and Oxford academic divisions (Business and Education).

The College of Mount St. Joseph
5701 Delhi Road, Cincinnati, OH 45233
(513) 244-4531 •
www.msj.edu
Graduate degree programs: 6
Number of bachelor’s degree programs: 38
Associate degree programs: 9
Certificate programs: 9
Application deadline for next enrollment: Rolling admission
Cost: Approximately $23,800 per year
Financial aid: In 2008-2009, more than 70 percent of adult students received some type of financial aid, including loans, grants and scholarships,, including a transfer scholarship, the Phi Theta Kappa Scholarship and the Moore-Eckel Scholarship. There are also scholarships available for specific areas of study.
Application deadline for next enrollment: Rolling admission
Overall students: 2,324
Graduate students: 421 - 205 full-time and 216 part-time
Non-traditional adult working students: 1,055; 772 part-time
Heavy online or online-only options: No
Average time to complete programs: Varies
Faculty: 240
Job placement help offered: Yes

Northern Kentucky University
100 Nunn Drive, Highland Heights, KY 41099
(859) 572-6364 •
www.nku.edu
Graduate degree programs: 20
Bachelor degree programs: 70
Associate degree programs: 6
Certificate programs: 23 graduate
Cost: Undergraduate full-time, $3,396 per semester for Kentucky residents ($5,628 for Cincinnati area residents). General graduate rate, $384 per credit hour ($509 for Cincinnati area residents).
Financial aid: For graduate students there are a few graduate assistantships. The only other aid available to graduate students is guaranteed student loans.
Application deadline for next enrollment: Varies
Graduate students: Approximately 1,600

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