I think it depends on the young person. It does seem that many people fail to appreciate the greatness of youth. Full energy every day, good physical shape, a lot of freedom without a lot of the responsibility. Specifically, college is excellent.
At no other point has there been such a great deal. You only need to commit to roughly 15 hours of classroom time each week. That is less than 40% of the hours of a full-time job. Even if you do 10 hours of outside classroom studying each week (which you don't), you're still looking at way less than what you're in for once you graduate.
Think about something. After college, you get a job, which will tie you down immensely. Want to go somewhere? Gotta put in for time off. Can't get time off? Looks like you're out of luck.
That brings me to my main point which is that now is the best time.
When opportunities come, it would be in our best interest to take them. If we don't, it's an absolute waste. Here you are with room to make mistakes and try new things and time to travel and meet people and do things you won't be able to in a few years. Don't squander it. Think about the long list of things that won't be possible as the years go by, do them now if for no other reason than the fact that you can.
Through doing such things, you never know what you will learn. In the past few years, I have learned through taking opportunities, that you never know where you're going to end up. Opportunities come at weird times, in unassuming places and it is only our job as young people to recognize good opportunities and be smart enough to take them.