Back in March, I wrote a blog post about a friend of mine who dropped out of college and has nonetheless been very successful. College wasn’t for her. While I usually work with students who are very invested in earning, at a minimum, their Bachelor’s degree, I occasionally encounter high school students who, like my friend, see college as a barrier to beginning their professional life rather than an opportunity. Understandably, parents of such high schoolers tend to be very concerned. For a few generations we’ve been told that college is the path to financial security. And this is largely borne out by statistics; census data tells us that the average high school graduate makes $35,000 a year, while a college graduate will take home closer to $54,000 annually.
Is college always the right path? Given that we are dedicated to helping students through the college admission process, it may seem odd that I’m writing a blog post questioning whether a student should always go to college. But I think we all know high school students who see their academic classes as a slog but light up in other areas of their life.