Tax time. Nobody enjoys it very much, especially when you end up owing the IRS. Still, it makes April the perfect month to train our minds on becoming more financially savvy. Perhaps this is why April is specifically set aside as Financial Literacy Month. The aim is to teach us all to be more financially responsible and “achieve financial wellness.”
At Career College of Northern Nevada, we fully support the idea of learning more about getting the most out of your finances and avoiding unnecessary debt. It’s one of the reasons an education at CCNN is so affordable compared with a conventional university setting, which can often saddle students with the lifetime burden of never-ending debt. Whether you’re studying welding and fabrication, Information Technology, medical assisting, HVAC or any number of other degrees, CCNN aims to make your studies affordable so you can graduate with confidence that the money you earn in your new career stays in your pocket.
If you are considering a new career and if CCNN is on your radar, it pays to look at the big picture as you make your decision. Ask yourself:
- What does my current income look like? How will this be positively impacted by a career change?
- Am I willing to pay the short-term cost of attending school to exponentially increase my skillset and lifetime earning potential?
- Does my current employer offer services such as tuition reimbursement or other tuition assistance? Ask. You might be surprised to find that they do.
- What are the economic benefits of a CCNN education? This can range from assistance with job placement to advanced training that you simply can’t get on the job.
- How will I fund my education? Most students find that a mix of external scholarships, financial aid and working a part- or full-time job is enough to cover costs and take them into the next stage of their career.
CCNN Financial Advisor Eric Cadenhead understands the importance of financial literacy, because he works with students on a daily basis, helping them with everything from Pell Grants and other financial aid options. He recommends setting up a one-on-one meeting with CCNN’s financial aid department so you get a real feel for all your options.
“Financial literacy is important because, as with anything else in life, the more you know, the better equipped you’ll be,” Cadenhead says. “With an investment as significant as your education … it’s really important to be as knowledgeable as possible.”
Get CCNN Financial Aid Officer Eric Cadenhead’s take on financial literacy here
In the end, financial literacy can be broken up into several stages, based on your current situation in life, as we described in a blog post last year. We highly recommend you give it a read to see if you’re in the survival stage, the want stage, the saving stage or the wealth-building stage. Once you understand that you’re not meant to merely survive – but thrive – you’ll be well on your way to financial literacy. And that’s something everyone should want to achieve.
Ever wondered about the differences between a traditional four-year college and a trade school in Reno such as Career College of Northern Nevada? Some differences are obvious: with a trade school or career college, you enjoy a shorter length of time required to earn a degree along with intense specialization in a particular field. But beyond that, there are more subtle – but still significant – contrasts between the two.
Many young students enter a four-year college setting with a vague idea of what they want to study. But it often takes two or three years of unrelated core classes before the students get to the heart of what they’ve come to learn about. By then, the student may have changed majors, further extending their college experience into a costly five- or six-year journey with no clear end game.
A trade school, on the other hand, is all about laser focus.
Here are some advantages to trade schools:
- Job satisfaction through specific training: When you study at Career College of Northern Nevada, you get exposure to not only your specific trade, but related ones, as well. This is great experience for anyone looking for increased job competence and will position them well for management positions.
- A competitive advantage: Formal training gives you a distinct advantage over those with only on-the-job training or no training at all.
- Advancement: Those with formal training will enjoy more opportunities to advance through the ranks than those without training.
- Career growth: Someone with typical on-the-job training probably only knows how to perform a few specific tasks. Some with a four-year degree may have zero practical skills. Formal technical training ensures a richer, more fulfilling career.
- Professional instructors: Trade school instructors such as those at CCNN have real-world experience in the trades they teach.
- Learning resources: CCNN students have access to a wide variety of resources for learning including formal training manuals, tutoring and a professional learning environment. Smaller class sizes mean more one-on-one access to instructors.
- Proof of accomplishment: When you complete your formal training at trade school, you’ll earn a certificate of accomplishment or diploma as evidence that you’ve received training in your field of choice. It’s proof that you set your intentions, followed through with them and are ready to take the next step to a rewarding career.
There’s seven reasons why CCNN is the top trade school in Reno!
More successful habits to employ for your future! Read part 1 now
Diet, sleep and exercise are your friends. A healthy body stimulates a healthy mind, so one of the best things you can to for yourself (and for achieving the success you crave) is to make self-care a priority habit. Meal-prepping can be extremely helpful, so you have guaranteed healthy meals. Make a simple workout routine a part of your daily schedule, even 30 minutes every other day. Staying on top of your health, and especially your sleep, will give your mind and body the energy you need to put the work in to be successful.
No doubt you’ve heard about goal setting and how instrumental it is to a successful career. If so, good. If not, listen up. Setting specific goals to work toward does three things (among others): motivates you, focuses your energy, and allows you to track your progress. Physically making goals, as in writing them down and tracking them, is an important step. You should always maintain some kind of detailed agenda, planner or calendar to track your specific goals, and to break down the steps you need to take to achieve your goals. This way, you stay organized and on-task while also giving yourself something to look back on to see how far you’ve come. It’s a powerful thing.
Stay Ahead of the Curve
If you don’t know what’s coming next in your industry, how are you to prepare for your future in it? Any successful person in any career tend to do one thing better than their less successful counterparts – read. And not just read for fun, mind you. They read for research purposes, for industry insights, for improving themselves by examining what others are doing, for staying ahead of the curve. Every day or every week, you should actively seek out the most recent news within your industry. A good idea is to find who the ‘thought leaders’ are in your field, whether they’re individuals or other companies, and consume as much information from them as you can. The only way to be better than your industry competition is by knowing what they’re doing and improving upon it.
These habits are only the beginning. As you progress through your career and education you will undoubtedly form habits of your own. Just make sure they’re positive to your overall goal – success. CCNN is committed to giving you all the resources you need for your vision of success. Talk with CCNN’s instructors and counselors about adopting the kinds of habits that will make you the best you can be. And remember, consistency is key.
Achieving success is a process. It takes work. While education and resources are vitally important for success, they don’t guarantee it. What every professional can do to boost their chances of career success is, firstly, to develop habits of successful people. And secondly, to start early. Start your education early, start setting goals early, and start developing these habits early. But developing new habits can be difficult and, in itself, a process. The trick to adopting successful habits is starting early and, as with all other things, practice. Here we’ll identify habits of successful people so that you might implement them in your own life in your pursuit of career success.
Forward-Thinking is Successful Thinking
Having a proactive mindset versus a reactive mindset is hallmark of successful people. While it seems simple on paper, the practice is a bit more complex. All that is really required to train yourself to adopt a future-forward mindset is determination and will-power. Planning is a huge part of it. Start by creating a detailed calendar of your next 3 months, and then work backwards from month 3, crossing off things on your to-do list well in advance. Budget out next month’s paycheck, Start the assignment not due for two weeks, change the oil in your car before mile 3,000. Executing on the small things well-in-advance of their deadline is the first step to having a forward-thinking mindset. With practice and patience, your bigger goals like getting that next promotion, buying a house, supporting a family, etc. won’t seem so out of reach.
Challenges Are Opportunities for Progress
Most successful people didn’t sail there on smooth waters. After all, calm seas never made skilled sailors. You’ll find yourself faced with plenty of challenges on your path to success. How you handle those challenges will define your success. And what most people at the highest levels of success will tell you is to embrace the challenges. Take them on with positivity and a forward-thinking mindset. Each challenge will make you better, whether you overcome or fall short. It’s all about intent and effort. The more you actively seek out challenges, the better you’ll become at pushing through them. And soon enough, when the big obstacles come your way, you’ll be ready for them.
Keep Good Company
Success is almost never achieved alone. Whether you realize it or not, the people around you heavily influence your life, achievements, and overall mindset. If your current or old friends don’t share your ambition or career interest, do your best to go out and find those people. If you’re in school this should be easy, just form study groups with fellow students in your program. This is not to say you have to do away with your old friends, only make new ones.
The people you surround yourself with will have a huge influence on your level of career success. The best thing young professionals can do is join networking groups or get involved with different trade organizations. Do you best to learn from those more experienced than yourself. When you’re mapping out your path to success, finding a mentor can also be tremendously helpful. A mentor is someone who helps guide you through your career path, acting as a support system back by experience. Your CCNN program advisor is a great resource to help seek out mentors and professional organizations.
These habits are only the beginning. Stay tuned for part 2!
When you picture the first day of school, what do you see? For many, starting a new school year conjures a feeling of nervous anticipation that sometimes borders on downright panic. Fortunately, that’s not the case at Career College of Northern Nevada, where we support our students from start to finish and every step in between.
For more than 30 years, Career College of Northern Nevada has been successfully guiding students from their first, uncertain days all the way through graduation and entry into a promising career.
So, for those of you just kicking off your time at CCNN, we’ve compiled this quick survival guide to put you on the path to academic success. In fact, this might be better called a guide to thriving, not just surviving.
- Never doubt your own abilities: This is the first and most crucial step to performing well at CCNN. Recent studies have shown that learning ability doesn’t have to decline with age. In fact, your verbal skills can increase with age. Which is great news for our students who’ve already been out in the workforce gaining invaluable insights into the working world.
- Know that your teachers are excited to see you: Sure, some nerves are expected on the first day, but at CCNN, our teachers welcome you with open arms. They know your practical life experience gives you an edge that will help stimulate better class discussions. Your experience also is a great source of material for written assignments. So, speak up, join in and reap the benefits of your already rich life.
- Feeling stressed? Student Resources can help: If carrying a full load is a source of stress, look over our Student Resources handbook to see the various services we offer to help. This can come in handy particularly in the early stages of your time at CCNN.
- Focus on what motivates you: Everyone has someone or something that drives them to be better. It might be a spouse, a child or the promise of landing the job of your dreams. Whatever it is, lean on that support system as you learn the ropes at Career College of Northern Nevada. Some tips: Let family members know when you’ll need extra time for exams. Avoid negative influences who question your motivation and generally drag you down. Stay focused on your decision to improve your life and chances at a better career.
- Lean on your peers: Make friends with your fellow CCNN students and tap into our Student Services to help you learn about programs and organizations where you can meet other students. Also, feel free to contact us any time. We’re here to help.
- Learn how to study: Make sure you attend orientation to get your bearings at CCNN. Orientation lasts a little under five hours, but is completely worth it. You’ll hear from instructors as well as current and former students. Their success stories will motivate you, and give you practical tips on how to study for your CCNN classes.
- Keep things realistic: In the long run, what you learn at CCNN is far more important than every single grade on every assignment. Your future employers are mostly concerned that you have the ability, discipline and persistence necessary to get the job done. A degree from CCNN is the first step in showing them your value.
Like our Graduating Class of 2016 in the video below, you can do this. We can help. Stay in touch with us via Facebook and Twitter to maximize your experience here. Not yet a student, but ready to take your career goals to the next level? Contact us today for details.
Ask Alyssia Escobar how she manages to raise a family while attending classes in the Health Information Management program at CCNN and she’ll tell you it comes down to sheer perseverance.
“Honestly, it’s been one of the hardest things I’ve ever done,” Escobar says, laughing. “I used to be the most negative, self-doubting person anyone has known. When I first started at CCNN, I couldn’t get it together.”
But that’s not the case today.
Now in her next-to-last phase of the Health Information Management program, Escobar juggles her first-grade daughter’s school with her own courses all while holding down the fort at home with her husband, who works graveyard shifts.
“It took me a while to find the right balance,” she says. “It wasn’t until I joined the Health Information program last January that I found that balance. Now, in the afternoons my daughter and I do our homework together. We both enjoy our quiet time.”
Escobar’s ultimate goal is to work in behavioral or mental health for a hospital or rehabilitation clinic. Once she finishes her coursework at CCNN, she’ll serve in the real-world setting of a medical facility for her 120-hour externship. It’s the final requirement of anyone studying in the 18-month Health Information Management program.
Escobar couldn’t have picked a better field to enter. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says health information management jobs are expected to grow by 21 percent by 2020, which puts her in a prime position to capitalize on a growing profession.
She says the staff at CCNN has been extremely flexible with her situation, even allowing her to start classes at 8 a.m., duck out quickly to get her daughter to school at 8:55, then return to resume her classwork.
“My teachers are so understanding,” she says. “Everything comes down to time management.”
To anyone doubting whether they can maintain home life while attending classes to further their education, Escobar encourages them to reach inside themselves, find the motivation and go for it.
“Even as the program got harder and I wasn’t sure I could keep going, just thinking about how far I’d gotten meant I couldn’t give up,” she says. “Once I gained that faith in myself, it gave me something to hold onto.”
Escobar says everyone faces challenges in life, but it’s how you react that matters most.
“If I can complete this program, anyone can,” she says. “Even when life gets tough, you need to get up and keep fighting. You will never get anywhere without throwing a few punches back.”
To learn more about whether CCNN is right for you, take our career quiz today. And, to all the hard-working mothers who manage to inspire us every single day, have a happy Mother’s Day. You deserve it!
Dear Fellow CCNN Students,
Welcome to a new quarter! Whether you’re a soon-to-be graduate or a brand-new student, the first day of school – aside from being a bit nerve-racking – is the ideal opportunity to start fresh. And what better place to do that than Career College of Northern Nevada? At CCNN, we make it a priority to provide our students with the supportive environment they need to not only accomplish their goals, but to continue to excel well into the future.
While many of our returning students may know the ropes, we’d like to take this time to introduce those of you just starting out to some tried and true tips to successfully navigating the path toward academic success, while also making the most of your CCNN experience.
Finance Your Education
Figuring out how you’re going to pay for college can be one of the toughest – if not scariest – parts of deciding to continue your education. Studies have shown that nearly one-third of high school graduates opt out of college due to a lack of finances. At CCNN, we believe everyone should have the opportunity to further their education. That’s why we not only educate our students on financial aid options, but also work tirelessly to make sure you get the assistance you need.
Ask for Help
When you’re relearning how to manage your time, juggling classes, homework and work can become real stressful really quickly. That’s why we offer our students a Student Resources handbook, chock-full of helpful resources available to you whenever you need them.
Just ask our returning students. This will come in handy multiple times throughout the course of your CCNN career. Feel like you’d benefit more from a face-to-face conversation? Feel free to contact us at any time. We’ll be happy to help connect you with the right person to answer your questions, no matter what it is.
Health Information Management Department Chair and CCNN instructor Lori Hoffman encourages students to speak up if they need help.
“When we try to help students along – when they are having a harder time than in some other classes – we may bring in tutoring or we may try different approaches,” Hoffman says. She says one of the unique approaches can involve bringing in another instructor to help the student see things from a different perspective.
And most importantly:
When you’re constantly heads-down rushing to your next class or studying for finals, it can be easy to miss out on all the awesome things going on around you. At CCNN, we try to make sure our students make the most of their time with us through various campus-sponsored organizations, events, celebrations and more. And, if you haven’t yet seen a former student return to CCNN to ring the bell, it’s something you shouldn’t miss.
In the end, the most important thing to realize is that you’ve taken the first step to achieving your goals – and for that you should be proud. We hope that you enjoy your time at CCNN this quarter and heed our advice in making the most of your time with us. Because before you know it, you’ll be graduating and well on your way to a promising career.
Ready to discover whether CCNN is right for you? Take our career assessment quiz here.