This is a very controversial subject, if you have strong opinions in this area you might get your feathers ruffled reading this post but you might learn something as well.
Every year millions of kids graduate high school.
In their junior year they have to make one of the biggest decision of their life up until this point, which in most cases is decided by their parents.
They have to decide to go to college and many parents, have pressed into their malleable brains that in order to be successful in life they needed to go to college.
After all they are told, go to college, get a degree and then get a good job, work 30 to 45 years and then retire happily ever after.
But is college a prerequisite to wealth accumulation and living happily ever after?
Do you need a college degree to get a good paying job that will allow you to build wealth for the future?
Some very good questions but before I answer them I want to let you know that I did not go to college although I attended my share of frat parties with friends after high school but I don’t think that counts for anything.
Frankly my parents had 6 kids and couldn’t afford it.
My wife is a college graduate and we did save for our children’s college from the time they were very young. We put $185 per month aside for my son which started when he was two in 1996 and we put $265 per month aside for my daughter right after she was born in 1998.
My son, David, went to college and after two years knew it wasn’t for him however my daughter Rachel, a sophomore at UCF, loves it, is getting good grades and studying to be a psychiatrist.
So, once again I ask, should you send your children to college?
It’s a really tough question that so many parents and young adults have to answer.
First let’s look at statistics.
According to the National Center For Education in the past 30 years college rates for a public university have risen by 397%.
First question, has the value of college gotten that much better in the past 30 years?
Meanwhile the median household income has only risen by 21.5% in the same amount of time.
So what happens is 44.5 million students start their adult lives in debt often a debt so large it becomes very hard to dig out of.
Student loan debt is over 1.5 trillion dollars as of 2018.
I think it’s time we take a hard look at the value of sending our children to purchase products from companies that charge $400 for a book that costs them $14 to print.
I think we need to take a hard look at the value of a child, not knowing what direction to turn, we send them to institutions who care more about indoctrination than they do about education.
There are no hard and fast rules here but if your child wants to be a professional, doctor, lawyer, engineer, accountant, veterinarian, they need a degree and our future depends on having people in these professions. So they need to go to college to become a professional.
What if they don’t want to be a professional?
What if they don’t know what they want?
You need to know your child.
If your child lacks discipline they may need the military or they may need to go work for an entry level position that requires them to show up on time, have a good attitude and show respect for others.
But it’s also extremely important to know that we need mechanics, electricians, HVAC technicians, welders, plumbers, carpenters, sales people and entrepreneurs.
Why do we as a society paint with a brush that makes people feel inadequate when they start at an entry level position?
Why do we have people all over our TV’s telling us we need a higher minimum wage as if it’s something bad?
We don’t need a higher minimum wage we need people to become good workers who start at minimum wage and move up from there after they become more valuable to those around them.
We don’t need our children to start their lives in debt over a hundred thousand dollars unless they want to be a professional.
I know many entrepreneurs, with zero college, who make more income than 95% of the doctors and lawyers in our country.
Some who make 10 to 20 times what top doctors are paid and they did that by learning something not taught in college.
They learned how to become an entrepreneur.
Being an entrepreneur is not taught in college because no entrepreneur, who is any good at what she does, would waste their time teaching kids in a classroom.
You can’t learn to be an entrepreneur in a classroom but you can learn by working for one.
This is a noble cause, one in which I set out on in 1986.
I worked for two entrepreneurs between 1986 and 1992 before I set out on my own.
I’ve been self-employed ever since.
What I’ve learned I will never forget because I learned it hands on and most of which I learned by making mistakes, some really big ones.
David Sandler, in his book titles, You Can’t Teach A Child To Ride A Bike At A Seminar, brilliantly lays out this point.
The best way to learn in life is hands on and it does not take going into debt hundreds of thousands of dollars to do so.
If your child is inclined to be a professional, college is the only way but if they are unsure, like so many are, starting life in the hole is in my opinion, a major mistake but ultimately you and your child have to make that final decision, preferably together.
To your lifelong prosperity,
P.S. If you would like to know how you can get more customers in your business I’d love to help you do that. Schedule a one on one call with me and we can discuss your goals. Click here