High school is over, now what? Here comes the long-debated topic on the choice

about whether to take up college, dive into the workforce or opt for trade school.

Many students struggle with this choice, and they all have their reasons for their

individual perspectives. However, what choice is best for you, and how do you

make this vital decision? Should it be based on what your friends are doing or what

your parents said? No. Do your research and make an informed decision by

understanding the pros and cons of every path.

Young adults choose to work instead of completing their college education for

several reasons. Often, this decision stems from a lack of finances. College

education is indeed expensive, and even if they get a full ride scholarship, students

still have to bear living expenses. Not everyone can afford a higher education.

College debt is a huge paranoia among students and a huge monetary responsibility

that not everyone is willing to take. Working after high school not only saves the

money they may spend on college, but it also helps them generate additional

revenue to secure their futures. In today’s world, a college degree is not any more a

guarantee of receiving a job than a high school diploma. By starting right out of

high school, they have the security of a steady job and chances of growth earlier in

their life. In addition, entering the workplace helps garner professional expertise in

the long run. Such people may end up having a better experience and reputation in

the field than a newcomer having a college education. Students may prioritize

earning money and investing it rightfully over spending it on a college education.

Moreover, some parents expect students to be financially independent after high

school and refuse to support future expenses. In such situations, students may find

it difficult to bear the burden of college. Sometimes, students themselves may

desire financial independence the day they leave high school. In other cases,

certain young adults may choose to take such a path having gotten tired of


Another common reason for skipping college could be the confusion over choosing

a career. Students are often confused about what majors they should pursue and are

not determined on what career may suit them. Working a full-time job in different

fields may help them decide what exactly they want to do in their future. Such

people leave school with the intention of gaining experience and returning to

college to complete their education. However, once a person ends up in a working

career, he or she may no longer wish to give up his or her job. Seeing college

expenses eat up most paychecks in your bank account can be a change not

everyone is ready to take. Once you begin to earn money, you no longer want to

spend as much.

People may also keep putting off their schooling in the fear that they will have to

deal with books, examinations and memorization. During the later years of their

life, students may have families to look after and more important responsibilities to

take care of. This makes the decision to resume college even more difficult. Age

barriers between new high school students and students returning to college after

years of work can embarrass the latter, discouraging them from taking up their

education. College debt may still overpower such people, and paying it off in the

later half of their lives can be a challenging task. College education needs time and

effort, which can make devoting to a job difficult. All these drawbacks often

discourage students from returning to a college education and make them second

guess their choices. In the end, it is for them to decide if college is really worth the


Higher education costs are one of the highest in the nation, but people still continue

to invest in these expenses with the hope of a better future. College prices continue

to touch the skies, but the advantages of having a college degree make the expense

worth it. One of the best returns of investing in a good quality college education is

the high possibility of increased salaries and ability to make more money. Students

with a college degree go on to earn a lot more than students with only a high

school diploma. Students with a college education are preferred by employers,

which increase their chances of getting a job. Higher education offers the promise

of employment, and that is what drives most people to invest in a degree. In

addition, jobs that need a college education usually come with greater benefits,

including retirement plans, health insurance and several other attractive perks,

available only to those having access to this education.

College education is definitely a worthwhile down payment for a financially stable

future to lock down a student’s success. However, what cannot be overlooked are

the intangible skills that college education teaches a student. The time students

spend at college also shapes their overall personality and improves their time

management and organizational skills. It provides an excellent opportunity for

students to network and build connections at an early stage in life. These skills

prove to be very useful in getting jobs and sustaining in their respective

workplaces. While in college, students often major in subjects they are passionate

about. After college, these students tend to work in a similar field, which

contributes to job satisfaction and contentment. When such students become

parents, their children have better access to opportunities, healthcare and higher

standard of living, and they encourage their children to earn a college education.

Such students end up passing on these benefits to their posterity, developing their

families and affecting several generations ahead of them and promising them a

better future.

Technical trade schools have an advantage over college education in terms of time.

The average trade school degree is about two years while a bachelor’s degree is

about four years. This is mainly because college education often comprises general

education classes that are not completely related to the major. This is unlike classes

in trade school that are very focused on the career field. In addition, the cost of a

trade school education is much less than a college education and seems to be a

more affordable option. However, in terms of pay, trade school graduates lack

behind and have much less earning potential than college graduates. College

graduates can go on to pursue a masters or postgraduate degree and earn even

more. In contrast, trade school graduates do not have as many opportunities to

boost their education. With an increase in labour jobs moving towards less

developed countries, employment opportunities have reduced in some sectors of

technical trades. Job security for these graduates has hence decreased in

comparison to college graduates.

Furthermore, trade jobs do not offer the same promises and perks as the jobs that

college graduates are eligible for. The jobs that trade school graduates take up are

often laborious jobs that need a lot more effort and hard work. These jobs are not

always white collar jobs and reputable. The skills that college students garner

through their four-year education are much more valuable and varied than the ones

students learn in trade school. Additionally, the impact of college education

surpasses the student’s own life and positively influences his family and further

generations. Trade school graduates cannot give the same facilities to their

children, and the trend of graduating from a vocational school may continue in

their families. In conclusion, the investment for trade school may be lesser than

college education, but so is the return.

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