It’s easy to question the value of a college education. But if you're thinking about discontinuing college or you're not sure where to go next, here are five reasons we think a college experience is valuable.
- A college degree is the new high school diploma.
Back in the day, a high school diploma signaled the transition to adulthood. These days, a college degree is prerequisite for most entry-level jobs. Plus, a recent Pew Research Center survey found that Millennial college grads who are working fulltime earn about $17,500 more annually than peers who only have a high school diploma.
- College helps you build marketable skills.
College is a time to figure out what you’re passionate about, discover talents, and develop important skills like how to communicate, work with others, and problem-solve. Employers are looking for those qualities in the people they hire. With class projects, industry internships, and interactions with professors and staff, college is the perfect place to develop those traits!
- It’s not just a diploma; it’s an education.
A degree is a piece of paper, while an education is an ongoing process of learning and applying knowledge. College, particularly in a liberal arts setting, is an opportunity to learn to think critically, communicate well, and become a better leader.
- College opens your eyes.
College allows you to spend time with people who look differently, think differently and come from different backgrounds than you do. Your college experience can help you to gain a better understanding of the world and be exposed to other cultures. It's a time to look past yourself and your life experience and begin to see the needs of those around you.
- It’s a place to build lasting relationships.
College mentors—in the form of professors, advisors or industry professionals—can help you get hands-on training and employment opportunities. You also can’t discount the power of networking. Without friendships forged during college, we wouldn’t have Facebook, Google, Time Magazine or Microsoft.