It seems that recently there is a movement discouraging high school graduates from getting their college degrees. There are many reasons that could be appealing in the short-term, but let’s face it, you typically can’t retire after you’ve spent 50 years in the gig economy. It’s possible to earn money on the side that can cover your auto lease payments or fund a dream vacation, but it’s unlikely you’d bank enough to cover health insurance costs of 401k matching as an employer otherwise would. College still matters, perhaps now more than ever, as we can see during the pandemic where every job is sacred. When it comes to long-term career goals, earning your degree is still a solid foundation that can set you up for success and provide you with the financial stability to build up a future nest egg.
Your Education Is Still Affordable
Don’t let the naysayers talk you out of pursuing your college degree. While a college education is expensive, it also can pay off not only income gained but the opportunities that will be opened up for you. As far as paying for it, after you have exhausted grants and scholarships for which you may qualify, you can take out a private loan to pay for the rest. While taking out a loan may seem like a foreboding experience before you have a career underway, it is actually a smart idea.
As long as you only borrow what you actually need, the money you will owe will be quite reasonable. A private lender will also be more lenient and let you pay monthly or every two weeks after you graduate. The headlines are filled with stories of people graduating with over $100,000 in debt. However, an extraordinarily low amount of people actually do this, and of those that do, they have borrowed more than they actually need to. Many could actually graduate with tens of thousands in total student loan debt.
You Still Make More on Average
Depending on what degree you are pursuing, the average worker who holds a 4-year college degree could earn slightly more than 50% over what a worker who only has a high-school diploma earns. This is a significant difference even when looked at for a single year. However, the difference grows even more starkly when looked at over decades. The college-educated worker will have significantly more money to invest and prepare for retirement when compared to the worker who does not hold a college degree.
Your Income Is More Stable
When you have a career that requires a 4-year college degree, you could enjoy a level of stability that is 2-3 times greater than those who hold only a 2-year degree or high school diploma. Essentially, this shows that the old adage the more you learn, the more you earn is true. Each level of higher education that you complete typically equates to a comparatively higher income. As you can see, it definitely pays to keep working toward your educational goals. The more you achieve, the more you stand to gain.
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