I’ve always been a believer in “attitude and aptitude” when employing but I also recognize that those two attributes can’t be measured when culling from opening letters and resumes. Sometimes having a degree and even a post graduate degree can be the difference.
Yes it was hard work.
No it hasn’t made a material difference to what I’m doing (that I’m aware of).
Yes it was worthwhile.
There were two main reasons I completed a Masters degree as a mature age student:
1. Insurance. What if I was in a competitive process for a job that I wanted/needed and I didn’t get past the resume cull because I had no tertiary qualifications? We all get told that loading up on super, life insurance, income protection and an up to date will is a prudent personal financial strategy. I believe you should add education to that list to help with “job insurance” if you are a white collar worker.
2. You don’t know what you don’t know. What if you actually learn something that could help you? I am tipping there is some value or there are a lot of very silly people in high paying professions. It was certainly good for me to get an academic spin on the practical stuff I had learnt and was putting into practice.
Now before you point out all the successful people who don’t have degrees remember the first point above – insurance. Very very few of us are college drop outs and go on to found a Microsoft, Facebook, Oracle or Dell and become billionaires (yes they were all drop outs).
Those guys don’t need life insurance or income protection either.