You’ve always heard that college is important, right? Well, what if I told you that that was a load of B.S.? You might be taken back a little bit by this statement, but I firmly believe that college is not for everyone. Sure, it is immensely important for those that want to be doctors and lawyers, but what about those high school students that want to go into plumbing because it interests them? Do they have to go to college in order to be a successful plumber? Let me ask you this in a different way, have you ever had a pipe burst in your house, you call the plumber, and then proceed to ask him which college he went to for his degree? Of course not! If he put in the proper time and received his certification, then he can most likely help you with your situation. Not everyone needs a degree.
All the parents out there always fret about what will happen to their child that didn’t go to college. “He’ll probably never be able to make it on his own,” they might think. But, in actuality, your non-degree seeking child might actually be better off than your scholarly child that’s pursuing his/her degree. You might think I’m pulling your leg, but if you stop and think for a moment, you’ll realize that I’m speaking the truth! Take a look at the benefits I have outlined below:
Benefits of Skipping Out On College
1) They Won’t Incur College Debt
Do you realize that the average student loan debt from a graduate today is over $25,000? Then, these new grads most likely can’t pay off the loans immediately and are forced to make the minimum payments for the next 10, sometimes 20 years!
2) They Get a Head Start With Their Income
College students typically handle their student loans in one of two ways. They either (a) work 25-30 hours per week at a job they hate to keep their student loans manageable when they graduate, or (b) they don’t work at all and just let their student loans pile up because they think they’ll be raking in the doe right after graduation. Either way though, the child that chooses not to go to college and begins working right away is earning a consistent income. At the very least, they will earn four years worth of income before the college grad even starts to earn theirs (not to mention the college grads have to put most of it toward their student loans).
3) They Mature Faster
For most, college is a place to experiment and have the time of their lives away from home. There really aren’t any bills to pay (since mom and dad typically fill in whatever the college loans do not) and there is no one to care for except yourself. In my opinion, there is not a whole lot of maturing going on during those college years.
On the other hand, those that immediately go out and get a job understand the importance of a paycheck. They might decide to live on their own, which gives them a taste of what it means to pay rent (on top of their clothing, food, and fuel expenses). If you would compare a college grad to a veteran four year full-time worker, I bet the employee has a much better handle on life.
4) They Might Earn a Larger Retirement Income
If the worker immediately starts putting away $500 a month with their new-found income, they will have five extra years to invest compared to the college grad. By investing early, this modest investment will yield $4.7 million by the time they are 63 years old. If the college grad doesn’t invest their $500/month until 5 years later, they will earn $1.5 million less!! That’s right, there’s no typo there. They will earn more than a million less because they waited five years to invest.
5) They Might Earn More Money
There are so many degree options today, and some of them make absolutely no sense. These students go to school and earn a degree that will set them on a path for making $30k a year. Meanwhile, their debt is $40k. They might have been better off learning a trade out of high school. Take a look at the jobs below and their average salary.
There are also other jobs not listed above that could have tremendous upside. You could start working as an executive assistant and experience some of the top executive minds in the world. This often leads to managerial positions if you play your cards right. Insurance salesman also earn quite a nice living if they stick to it (I know of a few that make over $100k a year and have no college degree). Finally, there are plenty of people that own their own business and earn quite a nice living that way.
Bottom line is, you don’t have to go to college to survive in life. Sure, it is getting more and more difficult to get by without one, but if you already know what you want to do and you can earn a decent wage without going to college, heck, you may find yourself years ahead of your friend in maturity and financially.
What do you think? Should every student really be striving to go to college?
My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.