Is a College Degree Really Worth It?

Is a College Degree Really Worth It?

Let’s face it: college is expensive.

And if you’re struggling to figure out what to make of all the information put in front of you about the cost of college, about student loans, or even about what path is right for you, it’s worth it to make sure that you have tools at your disposal for processing that information.

One such tool, called the College Risk Report, is a “financial risk analysis for those considering a college path.” Essentially, you input a university and major you’re considering, and then it will generate a report telling you the annual rate of return for that degree, for a high school education, and for a 2-year school. It displays the net value, or how much each path would be worth if you decided to take it today.

When Forbes featured the tool on its website earlier this year, it gave a few examples. Depending on what you major in, where you go, and how much you pay, college will either be worth it–it will provide a better ROI than any other options–or won’t, and you’d be better off spending your money on an Associate’s Degree or getting a job after high school.

For many, then, college simply isn’t worth it. The cost is too high these days, and the heavy burden of student debt can severely decrease earnings over time. But it’s up to you to use the tool and see for yourself how your (potential) degree stacks up.

Whatever you do, please don’t take any of this to mean that we’re anti-college here at NeMAC. That couldn’t be further from the truth. We support anyone who makes the choice to go to college, and think that college can be great for those looking to further their STEM education.

At the same time, we also want to remind everyone that there are other options out there besides college. There’s absolutely no shame in going to trade school or community college and getting a job in manufacturing or the skilled trades, and in many cases, you can do that straight out of high school.

You don’t need a college degree to be successful in life, and for those who may not want to take on the enormous debt that often comes with college, manufacturing is a great option. There are lots of great careers in manufacturing no matter what type of education you want to pursue, and we’re here to help you sort through all of your options!

If you’d like to learn more about opportunities for students after high school–whether that means college, a job in manufacturing, or even trade school–let us know in the comments or on Twitter, or reach out to a manufacturer or educator through our site. We’re here to help and would love to answer any questions you have!

photo credit: JenGallardo via photopin cc