Contrary To Popular Belief, You Don't Have To Go To A Four-Year University

Contrary To Popular Belief, You Don't Have To Go To A Four-Year University

Teach your kids that swinging a hammer is just as important as filling out spreadsheets.

I love being in college. The atmosphere, the sense of freedom, and the opportunities for networking are endless. However, this is life isn't fit for everyone, and that's more than ok! There's been a social stigma that's been pushed onto America's students that they have to go to a 4-year college. And while it's true that a bachelor's degree opens up doors in the corporate world, not every high school student is trying to pursue a career in the corporate world.

There are trade schools and apprenticeships that teach young men and women trades that are critical to the functioning of society, yet these are things we take for granted. We need to remind the students of America that building things with your hands is just as important as any other career.

Let's start by addressing the stigma that's been pushed by society. Classes like woodshop and auto-tech are considered the "dumb classes", and this has unfortunately prevented many students from learning valuable skills for life as well as exposing them to potential career opportunities. The idea that these classes are considered "blow off" classes absolutely floors me. The amount of time, attention to detail, and work that goes into these classes challenges your mind more than most AP classes. Not to mention that men and women who work in these fields require several certifications in order to do the work that most people consider non-important.

Another false narrative that's been pushed in America is that people who go into the trades were too dumb to go to college. This could not be further from the truth. As I mentioned prior, the amount of schooling that people go through to obtain these certifications often exceeds the daily work of most college students.

If you don't believe me, here's an example for you. I was in woodshop and construction classes all four years of high school, and I am so thankful I made the decision to do it. My teacher, Mr. Cattero, is one of my favorite people and was a key mentor to me in high school. This man not only has a bachelor's degree from Illinois State University but also has three masters degrees. Now if you still believe that anyone in those fields are idiots, I would heavily advise you take a look in the mirror.

My last point I want to make is the issue of money. Many people think that attending a four-year university is the only way to earn a living in America. This is once again a false narrative. Many people with certifications in automotive careers, as well as welding, make far more money than most people with bachelor's degrees.

Everyone is entitled to their path in life. There's nothing wrong with attending a four-year university and going into the corporate workforce. However, what is wrong is not exposing students to all their options. There are literally millions of jobs out there that we don't have people skilled enough to fill. Teach your kids that swinging a hammer is just as important as filling out spreadsheets.

Cover Image Credit: Christopher Burns

Popular Right Now

7 Truths About Being A Science Major


Whether your major is Human Bio, Chemistry, Neuroscience or any other that deals with a lot of numbers, theories, experiments and impossibly memorizing facts, you know the pressures of pursuing a career in this field. So without further ado, here are seven truths about being a science major:

1. There is no “syllabus week.”

Coming back to college in the fall is one of the best times of the year. Welcome week has become most students' favorite on-campus holiday. But then you have syllabus week: another widely celebrated week of no responsibilities… Unless you’re a science major that is. While your other friends get to enjoy this week of getting to know their professors and class expectations, you get to learn about IUPAC nomenclature of alkanes on the first day of organic chem.

2. Your heart breaks every time you have to buy a new textbook.

Somehow every professor seems to have their own “special edition” textbook for class… And somehow it’s always a couple hundred bucks… And somehow, it's ALWAYS required.

3. Hearing "attendance is not mandatory," but knowing attendance is VERY mandatory.

Your professor will tell you that they don’t take attendance. Your professor will put all lecture slides online. Your professor will even record their lectures and make those available as well. Yet if you still don’t go to class, you’ll fail for sure. Coming into lecture after missing just one day feels like everyone has learned an entire new language.

4. You’re never the smartest person in your class anymore.

No matter what subject, what class or what concentration, there will always be someone who is just that much better at it than you.

5. You get totally geeked out when you learn an awesome new fact.

Today in genetics you learned about mosaicism. The fact that somebody can have a disease in part of their total body cells but normal throughout all others gets you so hype. Even though you know that your family, friends and neighbors don’t actually care about your science facts, you HAVE to tell them all anyways.

6. There is never enough time in a day.

You are always stuck choosing between studying, eating, sleeping and having fun. If you're lucky, you'll get three of these done in one day. But if you're a risk taker, you can try to do all of these at once.

7. You question your major (and your sanity) almost daily.

This is especially true when it’s on a Tuesday night and you’ve already consumed a gallon of Starbucks trying to learn everything possible before your . Or maybe this is more prevalent when you have only made it through about half of the BioChem chapter and you have to leave for your three hour lab before your exam this afternoon. Regardless, you constantly wonder if all the stress is actually worth it, but somehow always decide that it is.

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

13 Last-Minute Halloween Costumes You Can Make Out Of Stuff You Already Have

For the last minute or lazy participants in Halloween.


It's that time of the year again! Usually, I try to plan my costumes way in advance, but I always end up needing a last minute costume idea. These costumes are so easy you can pull them together in minutes while still looking like you totally tried this year. Hopefully, you'll have most of these staples in your wardrobe, if not you can always shop around in a roommates closet and make something work. No one wants to wait on the Party City line the entire week of Halloween so best wishes coming up with one of these costumes.

1. Rosie the Riveter

We can do it!

All you need for this last minute costume idea is a blue button up and a red bandana. How much easier could it get?

2. Wednesday Addams

I'm not perky.

Although the black dress with the white collar is her iconic look, anything all black with braids will do.

3. Eleven

She's our friend and she's crazy!

Have a pink dress and navy sweater, that's a brilliant last-minute costume.

4. Lumberjack or The Bounty Man


A flannel and jeans is the most versatile costume.

5. Sim

I only speak Simlish.

This is the best last minute costume idea ever. All you have to do is print out the plumbob from this pdf, tape it together and stick it to a headband. Look at you! Such a creative costume in seconds.

6. Damian from Mean Girls

She doesn't even go here!

Every single person has a blue hoodie and a pair of sunglasses in their closet. This costume is basically just pjs.

7. Hippie

Peace out man.

This last minute costume idea is a little more on the complicated side, but with a few key pieces you should be able to pull it off.

8. Victoria's Secret Angel

What's my secret?

Robe + cute bralette = sexy model costume.

9. Maid

Cleaning services!

This costume requires an apron, so you might have to go out and buy one piece, but its adorable so its worth it.

10. Boo

It's scarin' time.

This last minute costume idea can literally be pulled from thin air. Its just a pink shirt and pigtails.

11. Scarecrow or Cowboy


Again, a flannel and jeans is a great costume. If you have a hat wear it and you're a cowboy, if not with a little makeup you can be a scarecrow.

12. 80's Workout Girl

Party off the pounds.

Bodysuits are super in right now so everyone has them. Add a pair of colorful or patterned leggings and you got yourself a look.

13. Some sort of animal

I'm a mouse, duh!

If all else fails put on some ears and draw on an eyeliner face.

Related Content

Facebook Comments