Wrestling with the question “should I go to college?” If you’re unsure of whether or not a college education is for you, here are some points to help you out.
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In this article:
- The Career You Want Requires a Degree
- The Promise of College Freedom and Fun Excites You
- You Want to Start Anew
- You Crave Independence-Induced Self-Improvement
- You’re Fine With How Much Resources You’re About to Put In
- You’re Up to the Challenge of Living With Student Loans
- You Want to Build a Professional Network
- Other Important Points to Ponder
7 Reasons Why College May Be For You
1. The Career You Want Requires a Degree
Near the end of high school, you’ll probably take a career assessment to guide you through your options after you graduate. It’ll give recommendations based on your skills and interests, and what career track may be a good match for you.
If it’s a job that requires you to have a bachelor’s degree, college is the only want to go. More so if it’s an industry that values graduate degrees.
2. The Promise of College Freedom and Fun Excites You
You’ve probably seen in movies and on TV how fun college can be.
Complete freedom or what some might call the “college experience” — no rules and definitely no parents and annoying siblings around. You can party as much as you want, stay out as late as you want, and essentially just do what you want (and still manage to make it in time for your 8:00 AM class).
If the idea of this excites you, then college probably is the right path for you.
As liberating and exciting college can be, such freedom calls for discipline, too. It’s easy to get caught up in all the fun and lose track of what you really came there for.
3. You Want to Start Anew
Has high school been an experience you want to completely forget? You might just need a fresh start in life.
Going away for college opens opportunities to recreate yourself and your life on your own terms. As cliched as it may be, leaving your old habits, problems, and your old self behind and finding the very best version of you can be the best decision you’ll ever make in your life.
Consider it the much-needed nudge to adulthood. College is the perfect time for exploration and self-discovery, both of which may just be waiting for you on that college campus.
4. You Crave Independence-Induced Self-Improvement
Have you always wanted to move out and be responsible for yourself? College is one of the best ways to do that.
There’s an undeniable value in living away from family. You’ll have to learn how to pay the bills, manage your time and money; you’ll have you be smarter and more mature when making decisions; you’ll slowly have to learn the ropes of being an adult.
It pays to put yourself in a situation where you can thrive. Living independently may just hold the key for that.
5. You’re Fine With How Much Resources You’re About to Put In
Are you okay with spending thousands of dollars on tuition and other fees for a college degree? Whether it’s from a college fund your parents have set up for you or from taking college loans or financial aid, you have to be certain that there are no other things you’d rather spend on
Would you prefer spending four to five years of your life learning a specialized trade? Or, would you rather use such time developing different practical skills or building your own business or brand?
Your answer would depend on the goals you’ve set for yourself. If you think a university education gives you the best chances for success, you need to trust your gut and pursue it.
6. You’re Up to the Challenge of Living With Student Loans
It’s true — a growing number of college graduates spend much of their professional tenure paying off their student loans. In fact, student loans in the US have ballooned to an immense $1.56 trillion, spread out among an estimated 45 million borrowers.
The thought of student loan debt and paying for college long after you’ve graduated might be daunting. However, if you are up to the challenge of coming up with an effective loan-repayment plan or if need be, working twice as hard to fulfill your career plans, then pursue your dreams.
7. You Want to Build a Professional Network
Attending college gives you the opportunity to start building your professional network. The relationships you make with your fellow students and the faculty can serve as a foundation for your budding network.
These connections can help you get your career started. Such connections will also be valuable, easily-accessible resources as you advance in your field.
Other Important Points to Ponder
1. A College Degree Does Not Necessarily Translate To Success
With big companies like Google, Apple, and IBM hiring non-college graduates, you may argue that some degrees are bound to be obsolete. In some cases, tangible, practical skills matter more today.
Some may have a post-doctorate, but still accomplish nothing in life. On the other hand, you also hear stories of college dropouts who’ve made a mark in their respective industries.
While having a degree from a prestigious university may give you a certain cachet, it wouldn’t matter much if you don’t have the skills to make yourself marketable.
2. We Live In the Information and Digital Age
Banking on the argument that skills trump degrees in some instances, there can be cheaper college alternatives you choose from. Bonus: you won’t need a student loan for these!
For example, you can enhance your skills by taking digital courses online. In fact, there many Ivy League courses you can learn online.
Why spend $200,000 and 5 years when you can learn the same thing for 2 grand in the span of 10 months, right?
If you take time to build your skills, market yourself well, and develop outstanding communication and charisma, the job hunt wouldn’t be as hard.
3. College as a Controlled Environment
What works on one person won’t necessarily work on another.
If you find university education a waste of time and unreasonably expensive, the choice of going with a cheaper, more practical, and faster alternative may be appealing.
However, if you’re susceptible to distractions and find the innate “social contract” in universities beneficial to your learning progression, going to college may be the better option for you.
The educational paradigm in colleges and universities, although subtly, may keep you on track of your goals.
Don’t forget to download, save, or share this handy infographic for reference:
Deciding on whether to go to college or not is one of the most challenging and significant decisions you will ever make in your life. At the end of the day, the most important question you have to answer is if pursuing a college education brings you closer to your vision of who you want to be.
Still confused if college is necessary for you? Check out this animated video:
What are some of your hesitations about going to college? Let us know in the comments section below!
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