College is Overrated

Brooke Taylor, Guest Writer

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Early November I was admitted into two public colleges. The challenge lies not only in the decision between schools, but to even go at all. The dream of many parents is for their kid to graduate from college and become successful in the workforce. To most this “success” means making a lot of money. Students just like me are stressing about their entire future or getting into the perfect college. Even though college isn’t what sets a certain future for those that go, college seems to becoming more overrated. The purpose of college is to get a higher education in order to be successful in life. The stereotype of going to college makes you more successful is an overlooked myth. College is not necessary to be successful and going to college could also hurt students in the long run.

We all know college is expensive, but think about what you are really paying for. A study by College Board, includes the average costs and fees to go to college in a four year university. Tuition alone costs $9,970.00 in one year of college. If that’s not a lot, add on the $10,800.00 in room and board. So hold on… college students are paying more for their bed and food than they are in their education? The sole purpose of college is for your education, so why is room and board prices so high? College is now focusing on the attractions in their university rather than the quality of education they provide. Adding on, is transportation, books, and supplies which have an average of $4,520.00 per year. The total cost of a 4 year plan can be as much as $101,160.00 if not more! Instead the money could be used to buy a house with a small starting career that would make money not spend it.

College students must be getting the best education if they pay that much for college… right?

However, statistics show that 57% of students aren’t done after 4 years, which means more money which leads to 33% becoming dropouts. Furthermore, even if you only pay for three years of college, then drop out, you still wasted your time and money. That leads to the question, why do students drop out? The main reason being, financial support. If students fail to pay half way through, they waste their already paid money and still not get a degree. If paying for college is getting increasingly hard to the point of not being able to finish school, or to finish school in ridiculous mounds of student loans debt, I question the need for college. A good example of a successful dropout would be Mark Zuckerberg. He didn’t need a college education to become a billionaire. Another example is Bill Gates.

Employment is another problem college can’t guarantee. The average rate of employment after college is 41.5%. Meaning, more than half of college students don’t get a job they studied for years in, not to mention paying more than what you would earn in a year. The money you pay for college isn’t rewarding in the end for 58.5% of college graduates. In fact, college students lose money to the point of being in debt. Many people will say college gives more opportunities at a career. Yet these results are contradicted by only 41.5% actually getting a job. Many employers are looking for experience, not degrees anymore because people can be book smart although few people today know the basics of a workplace and social skills. Which is another reason to go straight into the workforce making connections with important people, another step to become successful without college. Not going to college opens your opportunities to get hands on experience, students would never see at a four year university besides a part time side job.

Proven by these statistics, college does more harm than good. College is not worth it if students pay more for their bed than an education, drop out rates are influenced by financial issues, and people aren’t guaranteed a career after college. Instead of people going to college, they can make connections in the real world and gain a name for themselves, which they wouldn’t be able to do in college. Not going to college also helps many people stay out of debt their entire lives. To be successful doesn’t mean you need to go to college, therefore my choice between the two colleges is slim to none on going. I would rather get real world experience, a head start on making a career path and owning a house by the time everyone gets out of college in debt without a job.