The Smoke Signal

Quick Money or More Money? Why College Is Necessary For Your Success

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Photo provided by Creative Commons.

Photo provided by Creative Commons.

Photo provided by Creative Commons.

Will Sanford, Sports Editor

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With the year coming to a close, seniors are getting ready to head off to college and juniors are starting their search for what schools they’ll be applying to or looking for jobs they’ll be doing once high school is over. Students are pushed to attend college throughout all of high school, some students are left wondering how important college really is. Is it worth it? What are some effects of not attending?

According to the National Center for Education, 65.9% of high school graduates go on to attend some form of college. This number has risen over the past few decades but now appears to be declining. The high point of college attendance out of high school was in 2007, with about 70% of students going to college. Two years ago the number was at 67% and continues to decline.

Most of the people skipping college go directly into the job market. The Bureau of Labor Statistics claims that 51% of students have jobs by October and 74% are in the labor force, meaning they are either employed or looking for work.

People bypassing college may be making money but at what cost to their future? College graduates who hold a bachelor’s degree earn $2.27 million dollars in their lifetime on average, while those with master’s, doctoral, and professional degrees earn $2.67 million, $3.25 million, and $3.65 million, respectively. Those who only graduate high school will make about $1 million in their lifetime, a whole million less than those who attend college for just four years. Not attending college will end up costing you more than just going in the first place.

Going to college also makes getting a job easier. Employers would simply rather hire someone with four years extra education than someone without. The variety of jobs also opens up when you go to college as most jobs require degrees as basic prerequisites. Someone with an engineering degree has the ability to work for every major company in the world, a high school graduate may not even be able to find a job paying more than minimum wage. Further education helps to ensure your job security.

“When the market crashed in the early 2000’s I had a hard time finding a job because I didn’t have a degree in anything. 20 years ago I didn’t need a college degree to make a good amount of money, now it’s a necessity,” stated Raylene Kemp, a local realtor.

Unemployment rate drops by more than 5% when you have a bachelor’s degree and weekly income rises by almost $1,000. With college, you’re more likely to keep making money and more of it than a high school graduate. Those without a college education may be making money sooner but with a college education you’ll make more than them in a fraction of the time it took them to make what they do.

“We really only ever consider college graduates for jobs when people apply, it’s more assuring for a college graduate to be drawing out large loans than someone who only graduated high school,” said Carrie Sanford, a Senior Mortgage Advisor for Bay Area Funding Group.

College may be four years or even more and may cost a lot of money but in the long run, the pros outweigh the cons tremendously. Would you rather be making $1,000 more a week or working for McDonald’s with little chance of progression past a managerial job? Skipping out on having to pay college tuition may sound nice but losing $1 million in your lifetime sure doesn’t.

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Quick Money or More Money? Why College Is Necessary For Your Success