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  • Writer's pictureAlyssa Rodriguez

3 Ways to Learn Something New and Not Break the Bank

I am a big proponent of education. I grew up in a household that respected the school system and believed the best way to make it in this world was to go to college and get a "meaningful" degree. I was all on board! I loved to read, and I loved to learn. I dreamed of going to college, but I had no idea what I wanted to do when I grew up beside the typical "teacher," "doctor," "astronaut," and my favorite a WNBA point guard for the Los Angeles Sparks (however no one knew that!).

I loved school, from grade school to grad school; I loved the process. I wasn’t the smartest student by any means, but I worked hard and earned my grades. I graduated with honors and received my Doctor of Physical Therapy. The process was all worth it. But, our learning never stops. Life is continually changing and evolving. Education must be an ongoing process. It's an opportunity to better yourself and the world.

I just finished reading, "I Am Malala." It is a story about Malala Yousafzai, a brave young woman who advocated for young girls and their right to education in Pakistan. She was shot in the head by the Taliban for her passionate speeches in a culture that secludes women. Malala survived and became a symbol for a girl's right to education. She is a woman I admire, and I would be grateful for an opportunity to discuss ways to implement meaningful policy change and give access to education to all young girls and boys who don't have access to schools. Providing education and training to all people means there is a way to extinguish ignorance. When people are less ignorant, it leaves room for growth; it leaves room for less hate and opportunities for peace. It creates a world where we can work together, all for the greater good of all humankind.

This book, in all its wonder, left me to reflect on the blessings of my life. I received a top-notch education. I made it all the way to graduate school, without fear of my life and a door wide open and full of possibilities. Even now, I don't believe I have reached my full potential. In the last year and a half, I have been searching for something more. I want to make an impact in this world. I want to help others in a more meaningful way.

I am a physical therapist. I use my hands to help people who live in pain. I utilize exercise and the science of movement to prescribe treatments to alleviate pain and promote healthy strategies to live the best life possible. With the opioid crisis present in our society, I have an essential role. But I don't feel like it is enough. I yearn to do something more, and slowly I believe that is taking form.

In our country, the cost of education is exponentially rising. According to the Federal Reserve, over half of young adults who graduated from college in 2018 took on debt. And with a world-wide pandemic, the prospects for new hires are becoming somewhat scarce.

As I have been in search of something more, I turned to education. Going back to school did not make sense financially. So, how was I to learn a new skill without going into debt?

Here are my top 3 learning platforms that I am using to craft and hone my new skills. These platforms offer everything from business to writing, from photography to fashion. The hardest choice you will have to make is choosing which course to start!

ONE: LinkedIn Learning

LinkedIn Learning is a website that offers video courses taught by industry experts in the areas of business, software, and creative skills. There are over 5,000 courses! You can buy classes separately or subscribe and have access to the entire library. Many courses come with exercise assessments and video transcripts. Once you complete a course, you can post it to your LinkedIn profile!

Two: Coursera

Learn something new with top-rated instructors from universities and companies. You can learn something new from anywhere, and there are hundreds of free courses available. You can tackle different tracks too. You can start with simple 4-6 weeks courses, move towards guided projects, take specialization courses, obtain professional certificates, or earn your bachelor's or Master’s degree for a reasonable price.

Three: MasterClass

With masterclass, you can access hundreds of videos and lessons taught by 80+ of the world's best such as Steph Curry, Gordon Ramsey, and Natalie Portman. The classes are immersive and visually appealing. The annual membership is $180 with unlimited access.


Each of these platforms offers you an opportunity to learn and grow. If you are looking for a change or want to get that promotion at work, use these resources to get you there! Good luck and have fun learning!

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