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Finish Your Degree and Be a Good Role Model for Your Kids

If there’s one thing we tell kids it’s this: stay in school.

We celebrate their educational milestones with graduation parties at every turn, including kindergarten and 8th grade.

We applaud loudly and beam proudly when they earn their high school diploma or pass the GED. (Remember Wendy’s founder Dave Thomas who made front-page news when he earned his GED 1993 at the it’s-never-too-late age of 61?)

We encourage friends, neighbors, colleagues and mere acquaintances to “go for it” when thinking of finishing their degrees.


Because the case for education is solid.

  • A quality education has a positive effect on everything from economics to opportunity to safety to longevity.
  • When parents place value on education, usually their kids do too.
  • Parents can have the most profound influence on their children’s educational achievements.

And like the proverbial airplane oxygen mask, you can’t help your kids until you’ve helped yourself first.

Research proves it.

The National Center for Education Statistics shows that moms with bachelor’s degrees are more likely to have children who are better educated—regardless of race or ethnicity.

Still not convinced? Here are 4 more reasons why finishing your degree could make you a role model to your kids:

  1. Kids consistently pick parents and caregivers as top role models.
  2. Children look to role models to help shape their behavior and make difficult decisions.
  3. Teens, in particular, emulate the people they know best.
  4. Teens choose role models who are achievers because it helps them feel better about themselves.

Sources: American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, “Children and Role Models,” No. 99 September 2011

YouthPoll™, the Barna Research Group, “Teen Role Models: Who They Are, Why They Matter,” January 2011

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