Should You Send Your Kids To College? It’s Complicated

How much a college education is worth keeps changing. And it seems like nobody can work it out. A decade ago, thinkers were saying that colleges were in a bubble. And yet, today, the bubble continues and they keep attracting millions of students every year. Online programs don’t seem to be able to compete. 

Working out whether you should encourage your kids to go to college is challenging. But it turns out that it really makes a difference if you run the numbers.

The More Education You Have, The More Money You Make

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Just running the numbers, you can see that a proper education increases the chances that your kids will have good incomes in the future 

According to research from Forbes magazine, the figures break down as follows: 

  • No high school degree – $23,000
  • High school degree – $30,000
  • Short degree – $41,000
  • Long degree – $55,000
  • Post-graduate degree – $65,000 or more

Given these numbers, you can quickly see the value of encouraging your kids to get more education. Not only does it provide them with access to better jobs, but it also makes their work more interesting. Those with no high school degree usually have to make do with janitorial or food service occupations. However, those with post-grad degrees get to work in research institutions or on complex business projects. There’s a world of difference between the two. 

However, whether you should send all kids to college isn’t always clear. Some children excel in an academic environment while others struggle. You can see this from the college drop-out rate. It’s not for everyone. 

When you reach out to top MBA admissions consultants, they will usually point to several positive advantages of going to college, even if you aren’t academically inclined. 

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The first is that it provides young people with an opportunity to find their passion in life. Freshmen can often struggle to figure out what they should do, but school can provide the impetus to give them direction in their life. 

The second is that college provides different experiences from regular school. Often there are opportunities to take part in a vocation alongside regular education, introducing young people to the type of work that they will do in the future. 

Thirdly, some colleges offer non-traditional courses that may have high value in today’s economy. Even if your child isn’t academically talented, these options give them a chance to develop their skills in other areas. 

Learning without formal education is possible, but it is hard. Some people are self-teachers – also called auto-didacts – but the majority are not. They need direction in their lives to improve their performance. That’s why most employers will still ask people about their education. They know that it is a good proxy for their level of skill. A lack of education isn’t necessarily a negative, but most employers don’t have the time to screen every promising candidate. 

Formal education and learning remains a good choice for children even in today’s environment. Getting as much education as possible increases the chances of success in the workplace.

This is a contributed post and therefore may not reflect the views and opinions of this blog or its author.

Rob Gorski

Full time, work from home single Dad to my 3 amazing boys. Oh...and creator fo this blog. :-)
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