Depending on what you are looking for, attending college may or may not be the right thing after high school. But allowing for the fact that Americans collectively owe more than $1.3 trillion in student loans, it is appropriate to ask the question: Is college really worth it?
Incredibly to say, numbers say yes, despite the terrible student loan situation. Getting a degree after high school — whether on a traditional four-year campus or in a community college or through a career-specific certificate virtual program — is more beneficial than not. Here are ten healthy reasons why.
1. It increases your earning potential
There’s enough evidence that the saying “College is an investment in your future” is true because most young Bachelor’s degree-holders aged 25 to 34 earn in the neighborhood of $50,000 a year, while other people without a degree don’t make $30,000 per year. Those data are from a study made by the National Center for Education Statistics in 2016.
2. It assures you to gain job security
Everybody has bills to pay, food to purchase, and Netflix accounts to afford (some consumers); that’s why having steady employment always brings peace of mind. If you count at least on a bachelor’s degree, you’re likelier to get a job.
The unemployment rate for Americans with a college degree is low, 2.8% in 2016, according to the information provided by The Bureau of Labor Statistics. While the unemployment rate for Americans who could only complete high school doubled those numbers because it reached 5.4%.
3. More probabilities of getting ensured
Getting a job with plenty of benefits, like health insurance, is a strong reason why many students decide to go to college, says Kim Cook, rep of the nonprofit National College Access Network. She stated that a degree opens opportunities for jobs that will help people support their families.
92% of Americans age 25 to 64 with a college degree are insured. It appears that the more education you receive, the more likely you are to get health insurance. On the other side, 82% of people without a Bachelor’s or any other type of degree are insured.
4. It leads you to learn a valuable skill
Many people think that going to college means moving into a dorm on a campus with a beautiful garden and sophisticated facilities. It’s possible to earn an associate degree in two years or a few months.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics offers an occupation finder tool that is useful for searching for unique career options based on average pay or the degree that you probably need according to the system.
For instance, you would need something like an associate degree to be a dentist. Dental professionals earn up to $55,000, and in some cases, they surpass the amount of $74,999 in a year.
On the other hand, electrical installers and repair workers make the same amount of money, which means they need only a certificate in that field to average that annual income.
5. It helps you make lasting connections
For better or worse, landing a job often leads you to meet other people and get more contacts. Forty-four percent of Americans seeking a job claimed to have some relationship — sort of a professional connection, or even family members, pals, or somebody else, according to the research by the 2017 Pew Research Center report.
In professional organizations like the American Medical Student Association, the people you get to meet on campus, social media like Facebook or groups such as fraternities and sororities, and small get-togethers play an essential role. They open opportunities for you in the job market.
6. You can get more support once you start a business
Entrepreneurs like Mark Zuckerberg and TV shows demonstrate that entrepreneurship is emerging as an ideal career path. You don’t need a university degree to succeed, but it certainly doesn’t hurt, though.
Some data showed that a third part of the entrepreneurs in 2014 did have a college diploma, according to a 2015 report by a foundation called Ewing Marion Kauffman.
Many universities are doing their level best by bulking up their entrepreneurship offerings, increasing the number of courses and opportunities for graduates to get more experience.
Additionally, some schools, such as Texas A&M University, count on on-site incubators to help entrepreneurial students have their workspace and other free services such as legal counsel and accounting help.
7. It helps you become more financially fit
Besides making more money, people with college diplomas tend to be more financially secure than their peers without educational degrees (high school completed only). Suppose you have studied to get a bachelor’s degree or a Master’s.
In that case, you’ll have a retirement plan and earn more income in the future from investments, savings accounts, and real estate. These were the results of a study carried out in 2015 by the Lumina Foundation, an organization focused on helping students get better college outcomes.
8. It expands your career options
Having a college degree opens doors that were closed in the past. Likewise, it also gives you a more comprehensive range of jobs to choose from. Of 3.9 million supposedly good jobs that appeared during the Great Recession, 2.8 million are currently occupied by people with at least a college diploma, according to data from a 2015 report by Georgetown University.
There’s no official definition of what a good job is, but the report describes it as a full time one, a job post that provides an income of more than $53,000 a year and other employer benefits like health insurance and a retirement plan.
Corey Miles, a renowned sociologist who’s also an instructor at Virginia Tech, claims that college gives you options, which is the best thing for anyone to have. He also affirmed that people who attended college don’t have to beg for a job position that only helps pay the bills.
9. It helps you meet your soul mate — (take this into account seriously)
Although it’s not necessarily a reason to go to college, the prospect of finding your better half is encouraging. Numbers show that around 28% of married couples met on campus, according to a 2017 Facebook study.
If you are sick of thinking about the typical reasons to get a degree, thinking about dating someone from college can be exciting. The experts say that sometimes hearing the same sermon about the academic reasons to go to college hardly ever attracts high school graduates.
10. Going to College broadens your horizons
Even if you are planning to study subjects such as philosophy and sociology, which are generally topics that may be of interest to a selective group but don’t necessarily lead to an occupation, college is never a waste of time.
A significant part of employers says that broad skills (for example, critical thinking and an excellent capacity to solve problems) are eventually more important than the degree itself, according to a paper issued by the Association of American Colleges and Universities in 2016. The study focused mainly on liberal arts education.
In a nutshell, college always provides an opportunity to become more and more experienced beyond the classroom. “It’s one of the chances you have to better yourself, get contacts and visit other places,” – Cook says.