This will be a post about my open and honest opinion and experience with the higher education programs in America today.
College is an excellent idea.
For certain people who already have decided or feel strongly that they will pursue a career in one of the following:
If you know you want to work in a field where a degree is required then college is for you.
Now let’s talk about who college is NOT for:
- The undecided
- Those who hate school
- Those who have no scholarship offers or financial aid
Let’s start with who college is for…
If you desire to be a doctor, lawyer or any specialty type job that requires college education then college IS FOR YOU.
However, if you are unsure of what you want to do, have no scholarship offers, and would have to apply for private loans then I would confidently say that COLLEGE IS NOT FOR YOU.
At least not right now.
Just reconsider the options.
If you know who I am then you know I went to Rutgers and earned a double major in Criminal Justice and Sociology with minors in criminology and psychology.
Why would a college graduate write a blog post about “Is College Worth It”?
And generally advise most people NOT TO GO!
Let me explain…
I graduated and have not used my degree. (Specifically)
I loved learning about my degree but I would not want to work as a police officer or social worker.
I really only went to college because:
- My mom never went to college, neither did my father.
- I had the grades to get in and rumor had it if you go to college you’ll be successful and get a good job with good benefits and live happily ever after.
My mom was usually a secretary or involved in clerical work before she had kids.
My father was a Newark police officer who worked a lot of OT to make ends meet.
Growing up money was always the argument and the issue, the center root of all problems and attitudes.
My mom started saving for my college education when I was about 9 years old after my father passed away from his battle with Leukemia.
Losing my dad at a young age had a direct effect on my life choices.
I thought it would be noble to follow my father and grandfather’s footsteps and become a police officer too. (Times have changed)
However, I had pretty good grades in high school and my mom knew I could get into college and land a legit job.
So me being a good little conformist I followed the plan.
The movies made college seem cool and being “in college” had such a cool mature ring to it.
Fast forward to my freshman year.
I committed to Husson University to play DIII lacrosse mainly because I knew I had a great chance at starting as a freshman since the program was only in its second year!
I went into college “undecided” but quickly chose criminal justice as my major and fell in love with it after my intro to criminal justice course.
Note: If you choose undecided you will have a broad range of crappy classes you probably won’t be interested in…
I loved my intro to criminal justice professor and I loved the smaller classrooms of a small college.
Fast forward to sophomore year.
I guess you could say I wasn’t too happy in Maine anymore and I decided to transfer to Rutgers where I would be closer to my friends, family and girlfriend. Plus I would get that big college feel I started to desire after seeing the same faces every day it. Small colleges began to feel like just a different high school.
Hindsight is a funny thing.
I feel it is very necessary to write about my experience because if I can help someone who is in the decision process, that would be awesome!
I know deciding what to do after high school graduation can be overwhelming and confusing.
The more college’s try to get everyone to go to them the less people will be availble for the more blue collar jobs that are extremely crucial to the economy.
The world still needs:
- Garbage men
The main thing people have to realize is that college isn’t for everyone and by taking one year off after high school to organize your thoughts and figure out where you want to go from there is NOT A BAD THING.
In fact, I recommend taking a year off because you will grow so much.
If all of your friends are going to college and you don’t you can always visit them and see what it’s like.
Or you can pick their brains to see if you would like it or hate it.
If you feel like your missing out and you really want to go, then go.
If you like making money as your friends slowly sink into debt, then don’t go to college. Keep working and figure it out as you go.
It takes 4 years of full-time college to get a bachelors degree.
It takes the same amount of time to become an apprentice of an electrician.
Electricians make around 70k a year.
People that go to college and get a job typically start their salaries around 30-40k. And it took 4 years of schooling.
Yes I know people with degrees end up making more in the long run, but that data is from a different generation.
My overall point is this:
College is NOT the ONLY “next step”
Maybe for you, it’s a trade or tech school.
The internet is amazing and you can use it to learn anything you desire.
So like I said in the beginning of this post.
Unless you are trying to be a doctor, lawyer or accountant, etc.
Then you might want to take a second look at college.
It is an investment of:
- & Money
There are also no guarantees you will get a job out of college.
Time’s have changed.
When my mom was growing up, very few people went to college.
This generation it feels like 50% of graduates or more are going to college and schools are happy about this.
I agree, on paper, it sounds nice.
“Wow! 80% of this graduating class was accepted into a college.”
Well, I bet you the 20% that didn’t might be in a better position financially than those who went to college who most likely dropped out, changed their major, etc.
My financial situation at school:
My first year of school was paid for thankfully because of my mom.
However, the next four years at Rutgers cost me $80,000 in private and government loans…(Yes 4 years at Rutgers because some credits didn’t transfer)
I received loans with interest rates as low as 3% and as high as 12%.
Upon graduation, the only thing I heard from Rutgers was a phone call asking for a donation.
They never called to offer assistance finding a job, they never even called to see if I got one!
It’s been 2 years since I graduated and all Rutgers does is ask for more money…
All I do is work to pay off these loans and invest my time wisely.
Like growing this blog and my fitness website RealSolidMuscle.com
This post was created to help anyone considering their options post-graduation with my insights and experience first hand.
I now follow my passions and it took me a trip to college to find it, but that’s how life goes.
The only advice I can give you is follow your bliss.
All the best,