I just finished my undergraduate degree (finally).
I start my Master’s in four weeks, and during this “off” period I have taken a step back and analyzed what I have learned the past five years.
College is expensive. And takes a lot of time. So in the end….is it worth it?
I originally decided to go back to school because I could. As simple as that is. So many people have lived and died never having the option to learn. I was born in a country where this is one of the many freedoms we have. I did not want to take that for granted, so I went.
and here is what I have learned.
1. College is not necessary. This isn’t because the content of college is not good/useful. It is because what it takes to “make it” in this world is more related to your personal character. You must be a disciplined, focused person to succeed. Many many people have “made it” without a degree. Good character is the best credentials you can have.
2. Learning is an honor. Although I believe I would have succeeded in life without that piece of paper, I have come to value my learning experience in a way that is often taken for granted. Instead of becoming “smarter” I feel like I have become more aware. I am aware of the complexity of our world- and how limitless we as human beings really are (that’s not a cheesy “feel good” line….its actual science). Learning makes you look at the world, instead of ignore it.
3. You don’t have to go into debt. I have some school loans to pay- but that’s just because I was lazy in the beginning. I didn’t do my research and realize what was available to me. About two years in I buckled down and did my research, got scholarships/grants/etc. I will never do school loans again. There are other resources available to you. Don’t be lazy- do your research.
4. Considering someone else’s opinion does not cheapen your own. I think the classic sign of true ignorance is not being able to sit down and truly listen to someone else. I have strong personal beliefs about certain things but I have learned over the past few years that the only way I can really, truly believe something is to understand its counter argument as well. That has caused me to be more secure in my beliefs, and be more respectful of others.
So in the end, I have walked away learning principles instead of facts.
To me, that is very valuable.
If you think school is a waste of time, read history and shut up. Although our education system needs alotttttttt of improvement- be respectful of the people who fraught and died so we would have the freedom to learn. Male, female, of all races and all religions can learn here. That is an honor.
However If you chose to not go for personal reasons…don’t feel pressured to . Its not necessary for everyone. Its a choice, and your character will be the determining factor of your future not your degree.
Did you go to college? Did you decide not to? Why or why not? Comment Below…