LONGMEADOW, Mass., Dec. 5, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- In the United States today, 76 million adult women do not have a bachelor's degree. Many of those 76 million women had started their educational journey, but were unable to graduate as a result of various life factors. According to a new study just released by The American Women's College at Bay Path University (TAWC), conducted by Research Now, 82% of adult women surveyed didn't complete college because they were putting other priorities first – family, work, and financial obligations, just to name a few. More than half of the women in the survey, which focused on 2,000 women ages 25 – 44, had attempted to but never finished their degree. Of this segment, 94% claimed they would feel better about themselves if they received their bachelor's degree.
The majority of women surveyed shared that in the past, when attempting to balance education and other life commitments, their previous higher education institutions did not provide the flexibility they needed to continue: lack of access to online learning, faculty support, and accessible financial assistance. Furthermore, respondents overwhelmingly pointed to financial barriers and family commitments, at 57% and 54% respectively, as the most critical factors standing in the way of achieving a degree. This is a harsh reality, as the survey also indicates that 66% were left feeling disappointed that they did not complete their degree. Yet, promisingly, most expressed the determination to still finish.
"For adult women today to achieve their dream of a degree, colleges and universities need to reconsider their educational delivery models," said Dr. Carol A. Leary, President of Bay Path University. "We developed The American Women's College to meet the needs of women pursuing higher education while also balancing the competing demands of their complex lives. From accelerated online coursework that adapts to the students' learning styles to significant support systems, including career preparation, we have seen students thrive and successfully attain a degree as a result. Adult women students are not the only ones to gain from a college degree. Generations for decades to come will benefit." said, Leary. "Educate the woman, and you educate her children."
For women interested in returning to college, the survey findings showed that 96% agreed that furthering their education would allow them to seek the employment opportunities they've always wanted, and 95% shared that completing a degree would open many new doors, enabling them to have more control over their future. Also, industry research* shows that women with a degree can earn up to 74% more income over their lifetime than those with just a high school diploma. There is no question that women see the value in education; it is clear there is a dire need for universities to alter the way coursework is being delivered. In fact, 79% of respondents claimed that flexible learning hours would make returning to college easier, while 77% expressed that online learning would make the transition possible. The American Women's College has answered these needs, and developed programs to meet students entirely online.
Returning to class after time away can be daunting, and the majority of women who have considered returning are nervous (69%) and somewhat overwhelmed (58%) by the prospect. Due to this, it is not surprising that 76% of women claimed they would find it easier to return if they were surrounded by peers also returning to college. This may be particularly true for women balancing family commitments especially given that 70% believe going back to college will demonstrate the importance of education to their children.
Higher education in America is tasked with finding new ways to reach, encourage, educate and challenge adult women. The American Women's College at Bay Path University is the first entirely online, not-for-profit college, created to meet the unique needs of adult women and ensure the success of education within their multifaceted lives. Through the development of the revolutionary, award-winning model SOUL, Social Online Universal Learning, which adapts to each individual student's learning style, women pursue accelerated programs designed to propel them to career success. With this proprietary technology and the guidance and support of an all-women's community, these students are provided the tools they need to reach the finish line of their college education.
About Bay Path University:
Bay Path University was founded in 1897. With locations in Longmeadow (main), East Longmeadow (Philip H. Ryan Health Science Center), Sturbridge (MA), and Concord (MA), Bay Path's innovative program offerings include traditional undergraduate degrees for women, The American Women's College on-ground and online, the first all-women, all-online accredited bachelor's degree programs in the country; graduate programs for women and men; and professional development programs to organizations and individuals through its Strategic Alliances division. Bay Path's goal is to give students confidence in the fundamentals of their chosen field, the curiosity to question the ordinary, the leadership to show initiative, and the desire to make a difference.
The American Women's College at Bay Path University Survey was conducted in October 2017 by Research Now (www.researchnow.com) among 2,000 women ages 25-44 with a secondary (high school) education, some college/university, technical school or further education or vocational or technical degree.
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SOURCE The American Women’s College at Bay Path University