It's no secret that the cost of college is astronomical. According to the College Board, the average cost of college for private institutions was $32,410 while for public schools it was $23,890.
In 2014, the average income of American households was $51,759 according to the US Census Bureau
Nearly 70% of Americans do not have a college degree. Of course, this is most likely related to the price of college. With the average income of American households roughly only twice that of the average price of college, it's no wonder families cannot afford to send their children to school. There are dozens of other expenses to worry about than school.
But despite the price, it can be argued that college is worthwhile if you can find a way to make it work. And here's why.
1. It Prepares You For The Work Force
According to the Center on Education and the Workforce at Georgetown University, most of the jobs created after the recession went to college graduates. The skills you learn in college are ones that carry you directly into the work force. Beyond the statistics, it is really a no-brainer that you will be seen as more qualified for jobs with that college degree.
2. It Enhances Your Critical Thinking Skills
3. You Realize Your Potential
This reason is very personal for me. I went years without recognizing my own potential. Years doubting my abilities and strengths. But college has taught me that I do possess potential. I may not be the student getting straight A's or President of an organization, but that doesn't mean I cannot offer positive qualities of my own.
4. The Social Aspect
The social aspect of high school blows compared to college. Weekends on a college campus are so great that they are sometimes what get you through the week. Personal freedom goes a long way at the young ages of 18-22 years.
5. The People You Meet
I'm not going to pretend college is an elysium. There are bitches and douchebags here just like there were in high school. No place is perfect. But you will come across people you never would have at your small world of high school.
6. Partial Independence
Partial independence is where you still depend on your parents, but not for everything. You are now on your own to make your own decisions. You no longer have your parents looking over your shoulder at everything you do. But at the same time, you are not worrying about paying your bills and supporting yourself just yet (other than maybe some people).
7. The College Experience
One final thing to keep in mind is that you are not just investing in the education, you are investing in the experience. The experience is something that cannot be replicated. I am so lucky to be able to indulge in an experience at my school. You go through both positive and negative experiences. But overall, what is so great about it is that you are being socialized in a unique way unlike any other. Every time I go through something terrible while I am at school, I realize that it could be worse. I could be homeless. I could be starving. I could be without a job. I could be without the amazing experience I have been allowed to indulge in.