Should you go to college?
There is this common lie that higher education is a guarantee to success. Everyone is obsessed with attaining a basic degree for the promise of a brighter future. However, whereas education is the key to success, nothing is guaranteed anymore in the present day world.
Therefore, one might as well pursue their heart’s desire instead of becoming a slave to the education system even when it clearly does not suit them. Higher education does not always translate to better jobs and handsome salaries. The conventional wisdom of college education has its limitations although many people choose to be blind to that fact.
Besides, more than half of those who are enrolled into the degree program end up not getting the degree in the four-year timely fashion. It is worse for the low achievers in high school who are unlikely even to get a two-year associate's degree (Assaraf).
With increasing tuition fees and no degree to show for it, it is time parents and students opted for other alternatives. Higher education is clearly not meant for everybody, and that is okay. The sooner that the society accepts this, the better for everyone. Every year, the country suffers a great economic blow in the name of financial aids for higher education (Vedder and Gillen 282-290).
Should everyone go to college?
Vedder and Lerman advise the weak students to pursue vocational courses rather than waste a lot of finances in the name of tuition and time on college degrees which end up not so beneficial. Professor Vedder gives the situation a realistic approach by stating that higher education is a prerequisite for very few professions and the rest end up in jobs that do not require a degree qualification in the first place (Jeter and Curry).
A good example that Vedder used is the overqualified mail carriers with bachelor’s degree and the relevance for it in their context. As much as education is important, in some cases it is too big an opportunity cost; the funds could be used in securing a house or starting a business.
The education system should be more focused on skills rather than grades. Recent research in the United States’ Washington DC showed that employers preferred hands-on workers as opposed to graduates who according to the research, were incapable of solving problems and making congruent decisions which are a major fail in the education system (Barlevy and Neal).
Lerman urges students to evaluate themselves and make informed decisions as opposed to following the system blindly. This is a realist approach to the education system because some of those who join college never get to complete it in the first place. If such students were humble enough to accept their position and accede to the short-term vocational courses, their life would be much better and less stressful.
Students should not be pushed into college; instead, they should be allowed to choose their fate; what they want to pursue without any undue influence or coercion of any sort (Noe)
Assaraf, John. Having it all: achieving your life's goals and dreams. New York: Atria Books, 2007.
Barlevy, G and D Neal. "Pay for performance." American Economic Review (2012): 1805-1831.
Jeter, Derek and Jack Curry. The life you imagine: life lessons for achieving your dreams. New York: Crown Publishers, 2000.
Noe, Raymond A. Human resource management: gaining a competitive advantage. New York: McGraw Hill, 2013.
Vedder, Richard K. and Andrew Gillen. "Cost Versus Enrollment Bubbles". Academic Questions 24.3 (2011): 282-290. Web.
Paraphrase of Paragraph 12
Only two of the top ten job categories require higher education and they are: accounting which requires a bachelor’s degree and postsecondary teaching which requires a doctorate. However, this growth is bound to be limited by the preference for registered nurses, home health aides, customer care agents and clerks. These are jobs that do not need a bachelor’s degree.
Paraphrase of Paragraph 18
Professor Lerman goes ahead and advises students to refrain from college education if they do not have what it takes. He asserts that there is no shame in pursuing other venues to achieve success and that it is symbolic of low expectations. Critics suggest that most college dropouts are blacks and Hispanics, but this should be treated purely as gossip.
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