From bad dye jobs to bad boyfriends to mixing Red Bull with pretty much anything, everyone made mistakes in college. But what if the biggest mistake you made was attending college in the first place? Salon published a piece on why paying your way through college is the worst decision any young person can make. Here are a few reasons you might consider doing something else with your money and time:
1. Your student debt will haunt you… forever!
Just kidding — sort of. Although the high cost of tuition followed by years of crippling student debt seems like an obvious reason to avoid school, there’s more to it. Did you know that 71 percent of graduates had student debt in 2012? Or that the average debt for these kids is $29,400? Oh, but it gets worse — this is where the “forever” part comes in. There is a pretty good chance that students will face debt indefinitely due to the fact that the price of tuition is rising faster than inflation. But why is the cost of education increasing so fast?!
2. Your money isn’t necessarily going to education. It’s going to sports.
And mega gyms, and that “gourmet” food in the cafeteria, and administrator salaries, and other fancy “amenities” you may or may not have noticed while cramming for finals. Your dough is not necessarily paying for education and internships like it's supposed to. It’s more a marketing gimmick to get you to apply and attend in the first place, because who doesn’t want to have access to ellipticals and chargrilled chicken salads for four years? Never mind getting a decent education.
3. Spoiler alert: a degree these days doesn’t guarantee a job.
Anyone who just graduated from college can relate to this subject. Where are these careers our baby boomer parents guaranteed us?! According to the Huff Post, college graduate employment rate is the lowest it’s been in 20+ years, and isn’t showing signs of getting higher. Also, 44 percent of graduates are finding work but not necessarily enough to cover those soaring debt costs. But why aren't these graduates getting hired?
4. Yeah, you’ll get a piece of paper… but what else?
Sure, you might have learned some basic phrases in Spanish and how to cram for a history final, but how much did you actually learn about your field of study? Obviously this varies from student to student and graduate to graduate, but more than likely, not a whole lot. Salon pointed out that a degree doesn’t necessarily mean its holder has the skills it promises. So basically, you're paying all this money for those fancy amenities but not necessarily the education needed to work. This would also explain the high unemployment rates. It’s all coming together.
Although these reasons won’t resonate well with everyone — hats off to anyone studying more vocational subjects — perhaps high school juniors and seniors should consider them before applying to certain schools. Maybe not necessarily with the mindset of discounting school entirely, but perhaps more as a screening process. As in, choosing a school with more educational benefits than gym perks.