Ask Roxane: Which Subject do you Suggest I Study as a Mature Student?

By Roxane Zand
Roxane Zand, Sotheby’s Deputy Chairman of the Middle East shares her wealth of life experience with readers of Harper’s Bazaar Arabia in her regular column where she answers questions on love, life and luxury. Take a look at an extract from her column below and visit Harper’s Bazaar Arabia to read more.

I would love to study a new subject but am always so busy. What do you suggest?

You and many others have asked the same question! It is commendable to follow your heart even if your other commitments stand in the way. But measure the sacrifices you have to make. Usually if someone can’t indulge in further learning, it has to do with lack of time, not money, given that you can study online at no cost. But how to fend off the children? Or carve out some hours after work? As Hamlet would say, “That is the question!”


No one wants to throw away what they already have. Number one rule is to be clear about your subject. If French is your baguette, don’t waste time trying out Swahili; if you want business skills, don’t start a world tour of cowboy courses. Identify a clear subject, find a reputable (ideally certified) course, and set realistic goals. A university degree that involves sitting exams when you are a dental hygienist and have three young children is inadvisable.


Rule number two is be highly organised: mark the calendar with exact times set aside for studying; spread out the load in manageable ways, and reward yourself for sticking to it (e.g. finishing that chapter). Avoid late nights as it will destroy your relationships and your sleep pattern. Indulge yourself when you have to but never take your eyes off the goal. If work is bite-sized, it is better handled. Buddies are a great way to keep going: the two of you can keep each other on track. And, of course, make sure those around you are all aware of your commitment and support you. The learning process is empowering, but doing it as a mature student can be challenging. Be strong and pat yourself on the back when you get there. Bonne chance.

Find out more about the courses available at Sotheby's Institute of Art

Read more from Roxane at Harper’s Bazaar Arabia including:
- How early is too early for anti-ageing measures?

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