Opposing view point: College. Is it worth it?

The debate on the relevancy of college in the 21st century

With many students approaching (or bound to approach) their senior year, the topic of college is inevitable. No doubt, it’s a huge decision and a debate as well. Many students wonder if college is worth the time, money, and effort towards their future. However, the reason college institutions profit regardless of the price tag on them is because students benefit in the long run as well. If an individual plan accordingly, then college is well worth it.

The decision of attending college is due to the career and major in plan and being able to afford to attend. However, it’s no secret that those who attend college earn more than non-college graduates. In a study conducted by Northeastern University, the median for those with high school diplomas only earned about $39,000, while those with a bachelor’s degree earned roughly $65,000. Not only this, but a majority of careers out there require a degree, especially in the coming years due to the rise of stem careers (programmers, engineers, mobile app developers, etc.). Georgetown University predicts that 70% of all jobs will require some sort of college education by 2027, making a college degree more useful now than ever. Nonetheless, attending college provides teenagers and young adults a period of personal growth for the real world, making them more responsible, well-rounded, and independent.

However, many critics argue that a college degree doesn’t earn a substantial amount, and graduates actually learn less than $51,000. Though this may be true, the worth of a college degree is more than an annual salary. Not only this but the experiences a young adult can have from attending college alone, cannot be measured with a number. Another big opposition to attending college is debt. About 44 million Americans owe more than $1.5 trillion in student debt. The issue is understandable but can be managed as well. Through various scholarships, grants, and plans to target debt, it’s more manageable than most think. Another way to tackle debt is by attending community college, where costs are significantly lower than prestigious colleges and 4-year universities. Depending on where you live, the average cost of attending 1-year of community college is about $3,000. This doesn’t eliminate the issue but makes it more approachable than society makes it out to be.

If it wasn’t obvious enough, college is vital and worth the investment due to the long-term personal and financial opportunities it has to offer. From a better chance of earning more money, the ability to become independent, and the necessity of a degree in the coming years, attending college is almost a no-brainer. If taken the right steps to plan, college can be more accessible through community college, scholarships, grants, etc. to avoid the financial burden that people make college out to be.

By J.A.