5 Great Benefits of a College Education

College is expensive, and the costs associated with it are rising. With this in mind, you might wonder whether going to school is a good idea. There are several benefits to getting an education, and just a few of them are below.

Expand Your Horizons

It may be a somewhat old-fashioned idea, but the truth is that college still does a great job of exposing you to new ideas and ways of thinking. Ideally, this makes you better at whatever it is you decide to do in life. Even if you are pursuing a very practical degree, you can make an effort to squeeze in a few electives from the knowledge for the sake of the knowledge school of thought. There’s usually room on even the busiest student schedule to take a class in astronomy, philosophy, sign language, or many other topics, and you never know, you might actually find yourself pursuing a different major and life plan than you expected.

In addition, the college years are a really wonderful opportunity to stretch your wings into adulthood in a supportive and engaging environment where you can grow to your full potential. If you simply move out of your parents’ home and get a job, you face a real crash course in growing up as you’ll suddenly find yourself juggling working, bills, and managing a household. The other option, staying at home, doesn’t give you the opportunity to test your independence. In college, you can take steps toward independence at a pace that works for you. For example, spending the first year or two living on campus and eating on the campus meal plan may be a lot easier than trying to manage apartment living right away. Eventually, you will feel ready for the next steps like taking an internship abroad or maybe just a semester, because you have built a foundation for independence you can rely on.

Pursue a Career

A bachelor’s degree is needed for many different types of jobs today, and there are many careers you cannot pursue at all without formal schooling. These include jobs in medicine and health care, architecture, law, and accounting. If you are just out of high school and you aren’t quite sure what you want to do with your life, it’s easier to get a college degree now than to go back when you are older and you are juggling other responsibilities, such as a family and a full-time job. You could pursue a generalist degree that would allow you to work in many different fields, or you might find your calling while you’re in school.

Higher Earnings

There’s no guarantee that you will make any particular salary, but in general, people who go to college have higher earnings than those who do not. These earnings are often even higher for people who go on to get graduate degrees. It’s important to keep this in mind since college can be expensive, and you might be worried about how you will pay for it. In addition to federal aid, you may be able to take out private undergraduate or private graduate student loans. Scholarships and grants are also ways that you can pay for your classes and other costs. Ultimately, not having a degree may cost you a lot more than having one.

Making Connections

You can make lifelong personal and professional connections in college. This is a time when many people start to come into their own, and while you may keep in touch with a few old friends from your childhood and teen years, in college, you will discover many new things about yourself and your interests and have the opportunity to build relationships with people who share those interests. If you read stories about successful people, such as entrepreneurs or entertainers, you might be surprised to see how many of them first met one another as students. The future co-founder of your startup could be sitting beside you in your next business class.

Expanded Opportunity

A degree can give you the versatility to move into various lines of work throughout your career. While going back to school is necessary for certain types of career changes, for many others, it will only be necessary that you have a degree. Everything else can be learned on the job. You might be less likely to face unemployment since a wider variety of jobs are available to you.

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About the Author: Sam