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Old 22.01.2012, 12:55
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Advice needed! Suggestions for Higher Education possibilities please !

I've been living in Switzerland for almost seven years. I moved here to be with my husband. We married very young (21yrs) and at this point I hadn't made any real decisions for my future. I had finished a diploma in Disability and Community Support at a College just because after graduating from High School I had no idea what to do and began working with young children with disabilities and thought I would soon find out what I wanted to do.

But love struck before I enrolled in University and all of a sudden I was here with an education that doesn't exist in Switzerland. I began working at a daycare then an International School (i was very lucky) without having the proper education. My former boss suggested I do an online Early Childhood Education degree as it will help me keep my job.

So after 4 years of studying weekends and evenings I received a diploma that could have been done in 2 years if I were in Canada. It is also not the most challenging education.And to make matters worse it is probably not recognized in Switzerland. I then began at a Montessori Kindergarten and they suggested I get the education. So I did the online learning thing again and now have a 3rd diploma that here in Switzerland isn't worth much.

What is the problem? Well I never really made the choice to work with children - it just happened. I do enjoy the work and love the children but at the same time its just not a job forever. I don't have the patience anymore and the my heart isn't in it. I will want to have children of my own in a few years and don't want to go back to a job with children.

I want a professional education that is recognized in Switzerland. The problem is I don't want an online degree as they are often not recognized but what are my options to study in Switzerland? I am at a B2 level in German but most schools require C2. How do I find degree programs in English?

I would like to do a Bachelor in either Business Admin., or a continued study in connection with children such as speech therapy. Then I thought about becoming a nutritionist, fitness instructor. etc, etc.....
My mind in full with ideas but I can't make a decision. If I were back in Canada it would be so easy but I think because I am here and the options are either non existent or minimal I have no base to begin from.

I am becoming depressed about this and my husband is quite supportive and even suggested that I go to Canada to study if it makes it easier but I can't imagine living apart for four years.

To sum this up, I want a degree that is recognized in Switzerland. I want to change the field of work I am in, the education should be in English. I feel like I'm going crazy. I just want change but can't make a decision.
Has anyone else had this crisis in their life?

Last edited by Longbyt; 22.01.2012 at 16:13. Reason: See my post later in the Thread.
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Old 22.01.2012, 13:06
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Re: Help needed !

Take a deep breath !

Is this really a "crisis" ? You're just wondering how to get a distance learning degree in English that'll be recognised in Switzerland.

Maybe call some Swiss universities and ask what Batchelors they recognise as entry into Masters ? Call a few HR departments at some of the big firms ? Call some of the big recruitment agencies ?

Have a look at http://www.open.ac.uk/

Stay positive ! There are thousands of expats here in Switzerland with 'foreign' qualifications...
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Old 22.01.2012, 13:12
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Re: Help needed !

I experienced exactly the same thing when I was newly married - a French speaking Swiss in the UK. Several years recovering from a car accident, followed by 2 children. I went to Uni aged 29- but of course there was NO chance of doing a Degree in my mother-tongue- so English it was. Not easy- but you won't find many courses recognized in CH in English. After seven years your German must be pretty good now. Bonne chance.
The UK Open University may be very useful, but won't necessarily be recognized here.
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Old 22.01.2012, 13:19
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Re: Help needed !

Thank you both for your replies. I have to do some soul searching to get my head straight. Are there no programs offered here in English? I just don't think I can do the online education thing again.
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Old 22.01.2012, 13:23
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Re: Help needed !

Well, I think you need plan your thoughts - let us agree that you will take the decision yourself and we here will just brainstorm with you

So I believe first you need to put 2 - 3 alternatives about where else you would like to work in, this can be either a place (company for example in UNDP) or function (position for example a project manager),

Based on that, you can put your plan - search can start, I have a lot of work colleagues who studied MBA in Swiss universities in English and got promoted by their employers.

I have also other colleagues who had already a local degrees in their home country and they continued masters here in university of Bern (2) and in Zurich (1).

If you would like that we brainstorm together, try to list 3 - 4 job titles that you believe you would like to move to, and we start from there

All the best
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Old 22.01.2012, 13:31
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Re: Help needed !

Why not concentrate this year on learning German - intensive course and as much contact in the target language as poss. By the time next year courses start, you should be ready about 8 months is plenty.
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Old 22.01.2012, 14:10
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Re: Help needed !

Thanks again!
I knew by posting my thoughts would calm down. Focusing on German this year is a good idea Odile! It makes sense if my goal is to study here in Switzerland.

misr - The career choices I have in mind is Business Admin (I would like to be on the other side of things in a school - finances etc...)
- I also thought about fitness trainer/wellness something along that line but I get laughed at every time I mention it - they all say but that's a hobby and I guess it is not taken seriously as a career choice here.
- Speech Therapist (There is a need of English Speech Therapists in Zurich)

If i knew what was offered in English it would help me to make a decision I suppose.
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Old 22.01.2012, 14:10
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Re: Help needed !

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Are there no programs offered here in English?
If you mean Some Suggestions of what you may Study, I got the idea as a prolong to your current career you may work as an English teacher for example - where you only require some qualification in adult language teaching (e.g. SVEB 1) assuming English is your native language.

I see also that University of Bern teaches English Literature, see this link http://www.ens.unibe.ch/content/abou...elds_of_study/

You may also visit the study plan link (click on Study Plan) http://www.ens.unibe.ch/content/studies/


Hope this helps, there is also a program that may help you to make brainstorming its name is mind mapper http://download.cnet.com/windows/bra...ping-software/

Good luck
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Old 22.01.2012, 14:18
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Re: Help needed !

Here is a link to the Fernfachhochschule (FFHS).
The Fernfachhochschule belongs to the SUPSI, the Scuola universitaria professionale della Svizzera italiana = University of Applied Sciences of Southern Switzerland (UAS).

The FFHS offers degree courses by e-learning and the diplomas are recognised by the Swiss Confederation. Here is a link. I don't know if they offer courses in Englisch though.

http://www.fernfachhochschule.ch/ffh...gebot/bachelor

Notice: recognised diplomas here are necessary if you want to study at a public university or UAS and in the field of reglemented professions, where you need an authorisation in connection with a specific diploma.
On the labour market you don't need a recognised diploma: it's the company that decides about the value of your diploma.

Here is another link that brings you to all UAS and their offers here:
www.kfh.ch

Good luck!

Last edited by FMX; 22.01.2012 at 14:19. Reason: grammar
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Old 22.01.2012, 14:18
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Re: Help needed !

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Thanks again!

misr - The career choices I have in mind is Business Admin (I would like to be on the other side of things in a school - finances etc...)
I believe this is a great start, now we have a framework

I will take a homework to talk to two of my colleagues one studied Business Administration in University of Laussane (costed him 25,000 CHF for a 3 years study) and other Studied the same in Saint Gallen, (costed him about 70,000 CHF for a 4 years study)

Within a couple of days I will bring you all possible info about Business Adminstration study in both Universities.

When you feel the info about BA is good enough to evaluate it, we move looking for same kind of info for the other choises


With a bit of patience I believe you will make up your decision,

I believe I will collect this info by next Thursday if not earlier - due to some work travel till Wednesday.
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Old 22.01.2012, 14:35
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Re: Help needed !

From ETH Zürich, click on the links for more info

Bachelor programmes

The languageof instruction in all Bachelor programmes is German.

Master programmes

The language of instruction of many Masterprogrammes is English. Some programmes offer coursework in English and German. A few programmes arepredominantly taught in German. Moreinformation
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Old 22.01.2012, 14:37
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Re: Help needed !

If you want to do a Business course, then you might be in luck. Bonne chance.

www.zurich.uibs.org next course starts on 20th Feb.
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Old 22.01.2012, 14:49
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Re: Help needed !

I saw that at HWZ there is a Bachelor in Business Administration offered in English. Which makes sense since it is in Zurich. I will look into it. I guess what scares me is the fact I haven't opened a math book in over 10 years..
Do you think it possible to begin a totally different career this late in life?

PS Thanks again for all of your support so far! In matter of an hour my mind in calming and I am able to think a little straighter
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Old 22.01.2012, 14:59
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Re: Help needed !

Why not something like this: http://www.sml.zhaw.ch/en/management...anagement.html ?

All classes are taught in English and the students are from all over the world. They will probably accept your degrees as enough qualification to enroll without previous exams. They might ask you to do an internship in a more business related position first, but that would be easy to find and to do I think.
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Old 22.01.2012, 16:17
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Re: Advice needed! Suggestions for Higher Education possibilities please !

As this sort of problem is probably not peculiar to the poster and the replies are extremely helpful to anyone in this, or a similar, situation, I've changed the title to something which tells us what the 'Help needed' was about, moved the Thread to the correct section for Higher education and divided up the original post so that it is easier to read. I haven't altered the content in any way.

And now I'm going out and anyone who wants to complain in two or three Private Messages that I did it without asking first and didn't reply immediately to their messages will have to wait for more explanation till I get back.
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Old 22.01.2012, 17:22
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Re: Help needed !

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Do you think it possible to begin a totally different career this late in life?
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And why you think it is not possible ?

I am collecting these examples from the internet, about people whom changed their career after either failure or getting bored from what they do, if you search you will find more

Henry Ford: While Ford is today known for his innovative assembly line and American-made cars, he wasn't an instant success. In fact, his early businesses failed and left him broke five time before he founded the successful Ford Motor Company.

Soichiro Honda: The billion-dollar business that is Honda began with a series of failures and fortunate turns of luck. Honda was turned down by Toyota Motor Corporation for a job after interviewing for a job as an engineer, leaving him jobless for quite some time. He started making scooters of his own at home, and spurred on by his neighbors, finally started his own business.

Bill Gates: Gates didn't seem like a shoe-in for success after dropping out of Harvard and starting a failed first business with Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen called Traf-O-Data. While this early idea didn't work, Gates' later work did, creating the global empire that is Microsoft.

Walt Disney: Today Disney rakes in billions from merchandise, movies and theme parks around the world, but Walt Disney himself had a bit of a rough start. He was fired by a newspaper editor because, "he lacked imagination and had no good ideas." After that, Disney started a number of businesses that didn't last too long and ended with bankruptcy and failure. He kept plugging along, however, and eventually found a recipe for success that worked.

Albert Einstein: Most of us take Einstein's name as synonymous with genius, but he didn't always show such promise. Einstein did not speak until he was four and did not read until he was seven, causing his teachers and parents to think he was mentally handicapped, slow and anti-social. Eventually, he was expelled from school and was refused admittance to the Zurich Polytechnic School. It might have taken him a bit longer, but most people would agree that he caught on pretty well in the end, winning the Nobel Prize and changing the face of modern physics.

Winston Churchill: This Nobel Prize-winning, twice-elected Prime Minster of the United Kingdom wasn't always as well regarded as he is today. Churchill struggled in school and failed the sixth grade. After school he faced many years of political failures, as he was defeated in every election for public office until he finally became the Prime Minister at the ripe old age of 62.

Abraham Lincoln: While today he is remembered as one of the greatest leaders of our nation, Lincoln's life wasn't so easy. In his youth he went to war a captain and returned a private (if you're not familiar with military ranks, just know that private is as low as it goes.) Lincoln didn't stop failing there, however. He started numerous failed business and was defeated in numerous runs he made for public office.

Isaac Newton: Newton was undoubtedly a genius when it came to math, but he had some failings early on. He never did particularly well in school and when put in charge of running the family farm, he failed miserably, so poorly in fact that an uncle took charge and sent him off to Cambridge where he finally blossomed into the scholar we know today.

Reference


I think the only issue will be to detect a clear vision, I read a book titled Vision to Results, where it states that something with that meaning:

- Always people start to look for a vision, and start moving towards achieving it.
- A spiral is formed between their current reality and the vision they want to achive, where this spiral expands (extending the distance between current reality and vision) or contracts (reducing this distance) depending on the circumstances and people's attitude until they reach their vision
- If after sometime Vision is not achieved, people tend to make it easy for them and look for another vison where a new spiral is formed, then another vision and another until they feel lost
- The reason they feel lost here is not because they have no energy or their mindset is not able to change or to do more, it is simply because they don't know what do they need ... meaning they don't know their vision

That is why I believe everything is possible, if we plan for it right - our life will be easier towards having things done regardless of any complexity.
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Old 25.01.2012, 23:30
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Re: Help needed !

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misr - The career choices I have in mind is Business Admin (I would like to be on the other side of things in a school - finances etc...)
- I also thought about fitness trainer/wellness something along that line but I get laughed at every time I mention it - they all say but that's a hobby and I guess it is not taken seriously as a career choice here.
- Speech Therapist (There is a need of English Speech Therapists in Zurich)
Regarding Business Administration

So today I talked to one of my colleagues who studied this in University HEC Lausanne , They organize sessions everywhere in Switzerland and luckily I found on the internet that they have one in Zurich next week on 1st of February

Here are more details about it, it is free sessions to introduce all about BA, and you can freely ask if it needs special prerequisits or not


http://www.hec.unil.ch/executivemba/1to1EventZH

---------------------------------------------------------------------
Meet our school representatives in Zurich!
HEC Lausanne will be meeting Executive MBA candidates

TOP MBA Connect 1-to-1 Event in Zurich

Wednesday 1st February 2012
18:00-22:00

Our admission team will provide you with full information about the content of the courses, the format of the programme and the admission conditions.

==> For more information and registration: click here

Looking forward to seeing you there!

Your Executive MBA team


---------------------------------------------------------------------
To register, follow this link http://connect.topmba.com/candidates...ne/?eventID=77


I will write more info on Friday or during the weekend hopefully, also about fitness as I found someone who coachs the Swiss Referees.
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Old 28.01.2012, 16:20
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Re: Help needed !

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misr - The career choices I have in mind is Business Admin (I would like to be on the other side of things in a school - finances etc...)
- I also thought about fitness trainer/wellness something along that line but I get laughed at every time I mention it - they all say but that's a hobby and I guess it is not taken seriously as a career choice here.
- Speech Therapist (There is a need of English Speech Therapists in Zurich)
Related to MBA Studies

I asked colleagues who studied MBA as discussed earlier and here are the info I got

1) You will need first to apply
2) They interview you
3) If you pass, then you are accepted in the course.
4) Course is 15 month, which is taken in almost a year and half due to few breaks.
5) Costs differ between a university and another for example this upcoming course at Laussane costs 34,500 CHF, can be paid on two portions.
6) Some other Universities like IMD may reach 120,000 CHF - which I was told that it is considered the most expensive, maybe then comes Saint Gallen (around 70,000 CHF).
7) The study is 2 days a week - full day Friday and Saturday, from 8:00 am till 6:00 PM - there are 3 full weeks aside by that - one at start then middle then at the end.

There is full introduction 3 full weeks at the course start.


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I guess what scares me is the fact I haven't opened a math book in over 10 years..
Do you think it possible to begin a totally different career this late in life?
I asked this question, the answer was simple, there are a lot of people from different specifications studying this course and so different background - so this is not a problem at all, in addition that they interview you - if you are accepted this means you are candidate to have the course

8) Grades are from 1 - 6, getting less than 3 means you wasted your time and money.


The guys are quiet open if any more questions comes into your mind, they will be ready to answer.

Regarding fitness trainer/wellness

I asked a Swiss colleague who worked in a business and project management company for 12 years before he had a big shift, working as a referee's trainer, his answer was as follows

" Switzerland specifically and Europe and modern countries in general are cultured people - which means they read a lot, and since the information about fitness and physical wellness might be picked up from books, internet and so - then the market is not really welcoming lots of people doing this job however it is of course in need for them, but not much.

So the possibility will be to work in a GYM or school, maybe I am wrong here but this is what is in my mind now.

However if in addition to the training and wellness some studies that needs to be customized per individual like nutrition for example, then it is a good market - or physiotherapy - something that people cannot get easily from internet and is customized from one person to another, he can offer references here if that topic seems to be interesting.

This is what I collected so far, if I had more information within next week will post it.
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Old 28.01.2012, 21:45
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Re: Advice needed! Suggestions for Higher Education possibilities please !

Is it really more studying that you need? Maybe just a career change into a different area and work your way up.

I think maybe also to get onto a good MBA course then you need to already have experience in the relevant fields and be in a position where you are already demonstrating the skills.

You don't always need a diploma to do something that you love.
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Old 31.01.2012, 17:09
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Re: Advice needed! Suggestions for Higher Education possibilities please !

Thanks again for all of your replies! It is helpful to know there are people who want to help.

The search continues...........
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