Can You be Successful Without a College Degree?
What does a college degree mean to you? Sure, maybe it says we’ve spent time in a university setting, but maybe it says we’ve also got the crippling debt to show for it. For decades, a college education was considered the only option to success, but with new enrollment rates dwindling we are faced with a very different reality.
Gen Z, the post-millennial generation of young people born from 1996 to present, considers financial independence the first marker of being an adult. As they graduate high school and enter young adulthood, one of the biggest obstacles they are faced with is college and must ask themselves if it’s truly the right path for them. Over the last seven decades, the average cost of undergraduate tuition grew by more than four times, and advanced degree tuition by more than eight times. Given the option of being saddled with loan debt on top of a degree that doesn’t necessarily guarantee employment, college-age kids are holding out for something a little more reliable. Considering the job market before choosing a career and entering college, they are seeing trade school and non-degree careers from opticians, to dental assistants, to alternative energy technicians more than ever before.
Gen Z will do everything they can to set themselves up for success - and traditional college doesn’t always fall in line with that goal. Take a look at this infographic for more detail on the current state of a college education, what kind of alternatives exist for quality higher education, and how they are changing the standards for professionals of the future.