I've been thinking about an advanced degree for the past three or four months. My first choice was a Masters in Social Work, with a desire to work with foster children and adoption. I was very close to registering for classes, but I just couldn't pull the perverbial trigger. Being an adult student puts even more restrictions on your choices. When you're 18, your biggest obstacles are whether or not you can get into the program you want and can your parents pay for your education. Let's add family, work, and more complicated finances to the mix. Clearly, you're not going away to school (no matter how much you'd like to), but grad school, even at the smallest schools, is not cheap.
The program I was looking at would have required one year of taking pre-requisites. Grad school part time means three years. The school I was considering didn't seem to have many classes at night, and that would be a problem for my work schedule. I had to look for other options.
I'd looked at every local college, except the one which is a mile from my home. A small Catholic university with a good reputation, I took a look at their website and found they had a Masters in Counseling. Counseling and social work are under the same umbrella of working with the public and helping them with their problems, offering referrals, etc. So, I called and made an appointment with the head of department that same evening.
When I told her I hadn't been in a classroom for twenty-five years, she joked and said, "Well, that has been a while!" Later, she told me the oldest person in her program was 66.