College. It can be the most important eye-opening, horizon broadening experience of a lifetime for some, and yet a time consuming, money devouring waste of time for others. A lot of young folks finish high-school with their eyes on their future and prepare for another long four years at a university to ready themselves for the ever-expanding job market. What they’re not usually ready for is the actual work that goes along with it. We all know the trend of starting out your first semester at a new college strong and focused and slowly letting yourself procrastinate your work until you end up scraping by with less than refrigerator worthy test scores. If this pattern happens to so many people, then how come more of us aren’t wising up to it and saving our money?
The one to blame here should be the advertising and depiction of what college is going to be like as portayed in movies and on T.V. Sure, you see a college in a movie and it looks like the greatest place on Earth. Frat parties every weekend doing keg-stands, playing naked twister, and doing body shots off supermodel-looking girls that normally wouldn’t give you the time of day, but are somehow willingly to sleep with you for a warm Keystone Light. After four long years alcohol inbibing and sexual experimentation, the school happily hands you a degree that will guarantee you a cushy desk-job making 50k a year right off the bat. All you have to do is pay the measely fee of 40,000 dollars and you’re good to go right? Wrong. What most first-year students tend to realize is that college is absolutely nothing like they thought it would be. First of all, there’s a lot more reading than that one college movie let on. Also, where’s this girl you were suppose to be waking up to every morning? Oh that’s right, she never really existed. It’s these delusions that so many youths get hypnotized by that lead them to making a decision about their life that they didn’t even know they were unsure about in the first place.
The question students need to ask themselves is, should they even attend college in the first place? Sure, having a degree is well and good to show employers that, “Yes, I sat through all the classes, and yes I have a piece of paper to prove it”, but is it really worth your money when you can’t find a job? There are a lot of jobs out there that can be self-taught if you just make the effort to sit down and learn a skill on your own. Isn’t that all college is most of the time? Reading and taking notes about subjects that you’re not that necessarily that interested in in the first place? With that being said, wouldn’t you want to save your money and learn about what you’ve always wanted to on your own time and without all of the classes that have absolutely nothing to do with what you want to learn? Sure, you won’t have the paper saying that you did it on your own, but when it comes to skill and experience, I’d like to think that speaks for itself.
Now on the other hand, degrees are what get you through the door. Skill and experience don’t get you very far when the person interviewing you won’t take you as seriously as the graduate sitting next in line. This is why the system is sometimes a little screwy. A college graduate may in fact be a horrible employee, but the excellent employee may not be a college graduate. The intelligent, hard-working, and dependable guy who can’t afford to pay for over-priced classes gets his legs cut out from under him by the kid who’s never had a real job, barely crawled through his classes, and graduated on his parents tab with an undeserved cockiness and the first stages of alcoholism. Does it really seem fair when you look at it like this? Of course this isn’t the case most of the time, but the truth is, the people out there that need the jobs the most and are more than skilled individuals are getting short-changed by the three words “Bachelor Degree Required”.