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9 Good Reasons Why College May not be the Right Choice

Reasons Why College May not be the Best Move

It’s been ingrained in the heads of today’s youth (much to the delight of education employees) that a college education is a sure-fire way to earn more money and enjoy a higher quality of life. This is a nice idea, but much evidence exists to suggest that this is not actually the case. In fact, it’s entirely possible that college could actually impede a person’s financial progress, and there are plenty of valid reasons to skip college altogether.

1) Expense

Make no mistake about it: college is expensive. Ivy League universities cost an average of $160,000 over the four years needed to graduate. Since this astronomical figure is well out of reach of most students and their families, this means that the money must be borrowed. Nothing puts a damper on an increased income like a six-figure debt. Similarly, some people think that getting an online education or attending a state school will help reduce costs, but even though the tuition may be cheaper, the cost of textbooks and even a computer eventually add up. Perhaps people would see a healthier return on their money if they invested it instead of spending it on tuition.

2) Education is not synonymous with intelligence

While it’s true that statistics show college grads earning more money in their lifetimes, these statistics are skewed and cannot be trusted. According to a Forbes report, this can be explained by the fact that more intelligent people are more likely to go to college, and smarter people simply earn more money. Taking this into account, it becomes evident that higher education is not the fast track to success that universities would like students to believe.

3) Time is money

Human beings don’t live forever. The average lifespan of an American male is only 62 years, and a four-year (or perhaps even an eight-year) degree is a lot of time to spend on anything, especially anything that pays absolutely nothing. While it’s true that college provides students with the “university experience,” people who skip college spend the four years making money and elevating themselves in their workplaces.

4) Practical application

Something people don’t usually realize about higher education, is that learning is a far cry from doing. Graduates get this idea in their heads that the job market will be bustling with opportunity after they graduate and that employers will be chomping at the bit to hire them. They’re wrong. In truth, employers actually cringe at the idea of hiring a 22 or 23-year-old with no on-the-job experience whatsoever. The majority of marketable skills are learned not in a Harvard classroom but in the workplace, and training a new employee (regardless of his education or potential) can often be frustrating and time-consuming.

5) Degree overload

Many people who graduate from college come to find out that their degree is worth little more than the paper it’s printed on. An overwhelming number of students are earning degrees in things like business, drafting and design, criminal justice and various medical degrees, and the number of degree-holders is disproportional to the number of opportunities in the field. It’s hard for students to imagine graduating only to hold a useless degree, be in massive debt and work the same low-paying coffee-shop job they did as a high school student. Sadly, this is the end result for a good number of college graduates.

6) The high cost of failure

In an article published by the National Association of Scholars (NAS), the point is made that not everyone is cut out for college and should not be forced to attend. Ability, to the dismay of many “college for everyone” supporters, is real and without equality. When people go to college and are neither prepared nor suited to do so, it is nothing more than wishful thinking and a waste of time. When these students fail or drop out, they’re going to be worse off than they were before they started.

7) Bad habits

Not every aspect of the “university experience” is good. It is a well-documented fact that 40 percent of college students are commonly known to binge drink, use drugs and engage in risky sexual behavior with numerous partners. Then there’s hazing, an immature and barbaric form of initiation amongst college fraternities. This happens quite regularly, despite the grim and horrible outcomes that are all too common.
A Generation article written by Nick Baker addresses one such incident which took place at the University of Miami in Oxford, Ohio. An 18-year-old pledge was forced to drink thirty ounces of vodka as part of his initiation into the Sigma Chi fraternity. The police were called, and when they arrived, the pledge was said to be both unconscious and vomiting blood. He was treated and released the same evening, but it could have been much worse.
Another shocking and deplorable case of hazing occurred at Texas A&M University, according to a storyreleased by KBTX, a CBS affiliate. In this case, a pledge was given a brutally severe “wedgie” that damaged one of his testicles, which was later removed. As crazy as this may seem to anyone with a sense of decency and good will, these incidents actually happen quite regularly within fraternity houses all over the country.

8) Trades pay

Many people (for one reason or another) are not cut out for college, and would benefit far more from a marketable trade. People in the trades are actually able to become quite successful. Plumbers, electricians, steel workers and machinists (to name just a few) earn a comfortable living and needn’t attend college. Additionally, joining the trade unions provides these workers with an income, even while they’re still learning the business.

9) Non-graduate success stories

Ironically, some of the wealthiest and most influential people either dropped out of college or never went at all. Bill Gates dropped out of Harvard University to start Microsoft, the world’s leading software company, and it would be hard for even the most hard-headed college advocates to discredit the move. Larry Ellison, a University of Illinois dropout, co-founded Oracle and is worth an estimated $16 billion. Surprisingly, the list of these individuals is quite long.
College is not right for everyone; it’s expensive, time-consuming and can even be dangerous. People may make more money upon graduating, but they just as easily may not. Many people have found success without the help of a college degree; it simply comes down to drive and ability.