A lot of people now question the overall value of an education, but it's not just about nights in playing drinking games and arguing over trivial matters in Star Trek (although this may be the cliched appearance of what a student gets up to). And yes while there are people who are more than happy to compound that image, it's about what the student views as their own worthwhile education. There have been plenty of stories in the news over the last few years about college education not being the breeding ground for future leaders as it once was, but is this purely because more people are applying to colleges now than they used to be or is it about the quality of the degree itself?
Why Do A Degree?
It appears that they are as many arguments against doing a degree as there are for doing a degree now. Heading to college to complete three or four years doesn't necessarily mean that you will end up with a career as soon as you leave and, in fact, a lot of people end up moving back in with their parents while struggling to find the career they can do with the qualification that they gained. A lot of people end up picking a degree that is so niche, there isn't a suitable application for it in the general industries we know of now. If you want to hedge your bets and play smart, then you would go for a technical degree like engineering, which would give you a higher chance of employment in working with IT or machinery, but there are plenty of people who don't have the aptitude for that. So there are those who go for the safe degrees such as business or law. But plenty of companies will only look at you if you have a degree on your resume, and these can be for entry level service jobs, which highlights the fact that the world is a much more competitive place now. And by getting yourself into debt for a piece of paper that gives you the edge in a job application may mean that it is worth your time.
How We Learn Now
The way we would get an education 20 years ago in comparison to now is completely different. And the way we can get access to information now is, in many respects, easier. While there are many scholars who argue that the quality of information isn't as good due to sites like Wikipedia and so forth, the entryway to all this information is right there at your fingertips. So this means that with a little creative research we are able to get a bit more background on anything and everything. The one thing that has blown the education system sky high is the option of doing a degree that you don't need to physically attend classes for. There are so many distance learning courses that you can complete around your life commitments that it's feasible to get a worthwhile qualification in your spare time. From criminal justice programs to English literature or languages, the veritable spread of what you can learn from home and use as an entry way into a new career means that people can make the most of the text-based courses and become qualified in almost anything as long as you show the willing and have the funds. This shows to be quite a lucrative option for people who are wanting to change their careers halfway through their lives as well as those who are trying to get an education but can't afford to go to university. And with areas such as law the aforementioned criminal justice programs that can be completed from home means a way into the societal pillars such as the police or law, contributing to "the system."
The Value Of Expanding Your Mind
Although they say you cannot put a price on an education, it's effortless to do so, with saddling student debts and an increase in learning costs. But it's all about what you use the education for. While a lot of people are happy to go to university and spend 3 to 4 years doing nothing, there are those that value going to lectures to learn, and it is those people who will be the big earners when they leave their university with a first class honors degree and are able to fight for the most competitive jobs without any issue. It isn't just the piece of paper that holds value to these people, but it's what it represents years of hard toil and learning a wealth of information that you can't get anywhere else, let alone on the Internet! So for those students who are playing beer pong, they may be having the time of their lives but will they get the piece of paper at the end? If they do, then it's because they realize the error of their ways just in time!