Graduating early can save you time and money in room, board, meal plans, and tuition. You can graduate a semester early by taking summer and/or winter classes throughout your four years in college, or by getting internship and class credit at summer jobs and apprenticeships. You can accumulate up to 15 credits by taking winter and summer sessions, whether it be online or at a local college campus.
In your freshman year, I highly suggest taking core classes online to save space in your schedule for electives and activities. As a freshman, I took a history core requirement online over the winter session in order to have Fridays off. By eliminating a core class that would have taken up to three hours a week, I made more free time for myself to add another class, focus on a club or sport, or add an extracurricular activity like choir or band. Other core classes such as art, business, theology, and philosophy are often available as online short-term courses.
In order to graduate a semester early you would have to take major required/core classes online or on campus during the winter and summer breaks. 15 credits is one semester and five classes. If you are looking to save money and get a head start on your job search after college, graduating a semester early is the right path for you.
The normal amount of classes to take during a semester is five, but if you take a winter or summer course, you can take up to 36 credits a year. By saving money on room and board and meal plans, you could put that money toward a study abroad trip, a car, or rent for an apartment or house.
There are many benefits to graduating early; you would have your pick of jobs compared to those graduating in May, you can spend more time with family, you have more time to relax and come up with a life plan, and you have an advantage over all of your peers. If you are thinking of graduating a semester early, definitely take the leap; companies will notice and take that into consideration. It shows dedication, perseverance, and initiative. As millennials, we all know how hard it is to find a job, especially one that pays well and is in your field of study. By graduating early, you have an advantage over everyone that did not graduate early; it is an impressive thing to put on your resume.
Weigh the pros and cons before you make any firm decisions, but don’t hesitate to try. Taking winter and summer courses is a great way to use your time off, especially if you are not working. Graduating a semester early makes you stand out from the crowd. Companies today look for unique employees that can bring something new to the table. Graduating a semester early, or even a year early if you have the opportunity, is your first step to making yourself the perfect job applicant.