by Tina Hovekamp, Library
As we are all wading through high demand for classes, long waiting lists, new student loans, and high stress levels, some may wonder, is this mess all worth it? And does a college degree really make a difference? Today an advisee of mine emailed me feeling frustrated with the prospect of additional debt and more hard work to get a degree in the hopes that it may eventually improve his chances to make a good living (thus the inspiration for this post…).
In a recent article by U.S. News & World Report, author Richard Whitmire argued that colleges have become the new high school while college degrees are the most basic tool for economic survival. Some may disagree. After all, a college degree, besides being time consuming, could be quite expensive! Is there really a guaranteed payoff? According to data from the U.S. Department of Labor, “Education pays in higher earnings and lower unemployment rates.” The graph on this web page from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is quite clear. There is no ambiguity. The payoff of college education may not necessarily be your dream job right away, but it certainly seems to guarantee job choices and higher earnings.
So, brace yourselves, dear students! There is a light at the end of the tunnel! Paying for college now seems like a good investment in your future.