Is it too Late to go to College if you are in your 20s, 30s, 40s?

Are you in your late 30s and you are thinking of going back to college? Well, I don’t know what made you delay joining University but that is not a big deal.

Personally, I am 22 years old as I write this article and I am a freshman. I went to college right after high school but I dropped out. I was 18 years old when I first joined University.

After spending three years out of college, I finally started college afresh at 22. I hope you can now trust me to answer your question if it is too late to join college.

If you are interested in knowing why I dropped out of school and all the drama that took place after I had dropped out of college, check out my eBook.

It is not too late for someone in his 20s, 30s and even 40s to start college. The fear of being older than other students and not fitting in is not as serious as you think. You will discover that being a bit older than other students actually has advantages. But there is no denying that starting college late has its own challenges.

Too Late to go to College

The Fear of Fitting in

When I thought of going back to college at 22, the first thing that came to my mind was the fear of fitting in with other students.

I had stayed out of college for three years. I had gained real life experience more than the average college student. What stories would I be making with the younger students?

Read Also: How Dropping out of College affected my Life

I also worried that I might be pissed off constantly by the childish talk of young students who have no real life experience.

These worries have a ground and it is logical to be having such concerns when you think of going back to college in your 20s, 30s or 40s.

However, our minds are designed to exaggerate negative things in order to persuade us to avoid them. After I joined University at 22, the fears I had turned out to be true but they were not as terrible as I thought they would be.

A good number of my classmates are still teenagers. They talk about teenage stuff which obviously pisses me off but it is easy for me to avoid it.

I learned to reduce the number of times I interact with them. Additionally, whenever I talk to them, I keep my conversations professional.

I have learned to accommodate their childishness just as older people accommodated my childishness when I was a teenager. After a short while, you get used to the environment and the nagging teenage stories don’t bother you anymore.

Surprisingly, I met several guys in class who were in their late 20s. Actually, some are older than me. I thought I would be the only one who is old in the class but we are quite a number.

The level of comfort that other older students bring is priceless. The older students in class are my close buddies whom we talk more stuff other than class work.

I know you may be thinking that I was lucky to get older people in my class and that you may not be lucky as I was but the truth is that you will almost always find people older than you in any class.

Before I went back to college at 22, I knew a friend of mine who went back at 24. Another one went back at 26. Being at 22 barely feels old.


Starting University in your late 20s, 30s or 40s means you have more experience in life than the average student. The real life experience is really helpful in college.

You won’t struggle with most things that teenagers in college struggle with. The few extra years of maturity that you have, give you an edge.

Learning is more meaningful since you have a better understanding of how the real world works.

A Stronger Reason to be in College

Since 20s, 30s and 40s is not the typical age of starting University, it means those who go to University in that age bracket have a strong reason for enrolling.

It is unlikely that a 30 year old will go to college just because it is the next phase of life. In most cases, 30 year olds go back to college because they have seen need for it.

Related Post: 3 things I did after I dropped out of College

And the beauty of going to college when you have seen need for it is that you will be more focused. You also stand a better chance of posting good results.

Most teenagers who go to University only do that because it is the next step in life. They easily find themselves doing courses they don’t like.

Most teenagers don’t know what to do with their lives. They have no idea what they want to become in future, which makes picking the right course hard.

I made the same mistake during my first tenure in college. I was wise enough to stop my studies before going back after I became certain of what I wanted to do.

It is really wise to wait until you are sure of exactly what you want to do before going to University. Higher education is too expensive for you to make a mistake.

In your mature age, you are not too late to join college. At the same time, you have a better resolve on what you want to pursue.

Dwell on the Positive

Just like anything else in life, there is a positive and negative side to going back to college in your 20s, 30s or 40s. In the end, your stay in college will come down to what you choose to focus on.

I had grievances against college education and several times I swore I would never go back to University. The grievances were valid and they are still valid today.

But I chose to focus on the positives rather than the negatives. Right now, age can easily be a reason for you not to go to college but it can also be a reason for you to go to college.

My advice is that you choose the positive. Look at the positives of going back to college at your advanced age and motivate yourself to go back.

For the negatives, accept that they are there and that there is very little you can do about them. I still grieve that college education is expensive but I have justified my stay in college by taking advantage of the college environment to work on my blogging career.

I use college facilities to make my life better. In real sense, college can be worth the cost and not worth the cost depending on what you want it to be.

With that said, I hope you will follow my advice and enroll back to college. It is a great experience to start college in your late 20s, 30s or 40s and I confidently tell you that it is not too late.

In case you are still uncertain whether joining College at your advanced age is a good idea, consider hiring a life coach to guide you.

All the best!