Is college education worth the investment?
Life is all about risks. As president of Wealth Management Midwest, I’m well aware of the risk taking game.
But I never thought I’d hear a debate on whether or not a college education was worth the risk.
Getting a college education was always the goal, no questions asked. And that was especially true in my family. When I graduated from the University of Minnesota-Duluth, I became the sixth generation on the Purdy side of the family to earn a college degree.
Not many families can say that. Education was such an important part of my life.
So I found myself surprised to be seeing a “hot” topic of late that includes critics from either side arguing over the real value of a college education in this day and age. It seems this national debate has been raging for a while now.
Let’s face it, timing is ripe…it’s on the heels of one of the worst recessions in years. Recession-scarred parents and students feel like a deer in the headlights when they look at how much a college education will cost them.
And now their hearing media reports from some critics saying the “value” of a college education isn’t what it used to be. Don’t bother, they say. It’s not worth the financial risk.
Getting a college education has never been inexpensive. According to the College Board, total borrowing to pay for an undergraduate degree jumped from $50 billion in 2001 to $112 billion in 2011.
Wow. That’s a lot of money.
And with the recession still smoking, there are plenty of college grads out there job-hunting, and not having any luck. More debt and not having much of a salary to pay it off can be problematic.
But to question the value of the education altogether?
Now that’s a risky decision in my book.
College grads, in the long run, (and stats prove my point) fare better than their less-educated peers in the salary department. On average, college grads earn about 70 percent more than the high school graduate.
And let’s not forget…now that jobs can be hard to come by, and there’s more competition, companies might not think twice on requiring some form of postsecondary education or an advanced degree from a University.
I believe it’s risky to NOT invest in yourself, and your education.
Yes, I believe strongly in education. It develops a person’s ability to think and make better decisions.
I know that college might not be for everyone, but some type of education after high school is…and developing a skill is necessary to become successful. I think there was a time when a person could drop out of high school, and be hired on with a company like 3M or Andersen Windows, and start at the bottom and work their way up.
Success stories like that now are few and far between.
If you work hard at your job, you can earn a living. But if you work hard on yourself, via education and training, you can potentially earn a fortune.
That doesn’t sound too risky to me.
Over the years, when I ask my most successful clients what advice they would give a young person still in high school, do you know what it is? Without exception they say, “Continue with education.”
I have never met anyone who wishes they had less education.
So, the lesson may be: The only thing more expensive than a college education might just be not having one down the road.
Now that sounds risky.
David Purdy is president of Wealth Management Midwest in Forest Lake. Securities offered through LPL Financial, a registered investment advisor, member FINRA/SIPC. For comments or questions: firstname.lastname@example.org. Opinions voiced are for general information and not intended to provide specific advice. Consult a financial planner prior to investing. 651-464-2664.