4 Reasons Why You Should Wait To Go To College After High School

There is no end to the reasons why you should go to college after high school. What about reasons not to? The idea for this post came to me as I was sitting in line applying for school for the third time and having recently turned 31. It felt pretty good for some reason(s). Well… Here they are in no particular order.

International Travel Is Easier When You’re Younger

The graph below represents the ease of travel in relation to age (10 being the easiest, 0 being the hardest):
Travel Graph

That graph is totally based on guesstimation BUT I think it’s pretty true. RIGHT after high school it’s a little harder to travel because most people will be short on cash, connections and experience to make cool travel happen (but it’s totally possible). After a few years pass you’ll have some money saved (from working) and you’ll have met some people online/offline who have convinced you how cool [INSERT COOL COUNTRY] is and you’ll be all set to go!

This travel could TOTALLY be fit in right after college, or on some kind of exchange student thing, but there’s nothing better than doing it “on your own.” πŸ™‚ A degree DOES make it easier to get work outside of the country, but (IMHO) that’s another good reason not to have one. Learning to “wing it.” πŸ˜€

As the graph moves to the left you’ll see it getting harder and harder to travel. I think this happens to just about everyone. You get bogged down with relationships, kids, work, responsibilities (house payments and the like), business, etc. Better to do it early (and often if you can).

Real World Experience Beats Book Knowledge EVERY Time

Too bad more people don’t get nudged towards not going directly to college after high school. It’s nice having the cushioning school provides for getting out of the house the first time, but how nice would it be doing it on your own right away. Getting a job, getting an apartment and buying a car all on your own. And doing it the good ol’ fashioned way, by working for it. You would learn real life living skills earlier on in life, instead of being like me… 31 and trying to figure them out now! Imagine cooking, cleaning and… learning how to live (totally on your own) right from the jump, all the while learning skills in whatever work you decide to get into (there are jobs, besides flipping burgers, available to those who lack a college education).

Pleasure Now, Business Later (Maybe)

Life is always hard work. Whether you’re in school, retired, a millionaire, broke… Life has ups and downs, it’s just the way it is. That said you could be experiencing these ups and downs while chasing your dreams instead of drudging through school with uncertainty. Of course, some dreams require school (doctors and lawyers), but many dreams don’t and why not pursue them fully right away! And… You never know. By chasing your dreams you might find yourself in a position of earning a living from said dream thus combining the business AND the pleasure (yay!) If that doesn’t work out for you, well, you can always…

Fall Back On School

I think this is what put the secret smile on my face. Once you fully play your “school card” it’s gone. Never to be played again. If you hold onto it for a little while you can work odd jobs, try starting businesses, live in a foreign country for 5 years, goof off with social media, win a free car with free gas, drive around the country, try to start more businesses and… Decide to whip out your school card when things start to slow down and you want to get focused (Note: Those are all things I’ve done. πŸ™‚ )

Once you’re done with school… You’re done. I mean, you can go back, get another degree, a masters, a PhD perhaps but then… When you’re done. You’re done. And it’ll be time to “pay the piper.” Why not save that until you have a better idea of what you REALLY want to do after you’ve experienced some things, traveled a bit and met some people?

I Should Have Waited…

When I graduated high school in 1998, I planned on going to school for physical therapy. I signed up for a year and failed all of my classes (except for Chinese language). What would have “made sense” (in terms of $ and cents) would have been getting some kind of “Information Technology” degree. I REALLY liked Chinese and decided that I needed to “move to China.” I ended up in Taiwan.

Before I go on to the next part of the story a side note. I was (am?) a mathematical GENIUS! (I think so anyway πŸ™‚ ). I LOVE math. The problem was I never saw a “practical” use for it (engineering, accounting or stock trading didn’t seem very “practical” to me.) I would have went to school for… “math” but I didn’t really understand what I was going to do with it… *back to Taiwan*

Well, after some traveling and meeting people I ran into jlick. Jlick somehow picked up on my interest in mathematics and business and introduced me to the world of economics! Since I never ran into economics in high school or college I never really knew what it was. After reading a couple books he loaned to me I FINALLY knew what I wanted to study! What’s funny is… I was 25 or 26 at the time. I didn’t figure out what I wanted to study until 7 or 8 years AFTER graduating. The year I spent in school was a COMPLETE waste time and money (except for those Chinese classes).

Anyhow… Just some food for thought. I think there must be a lot of wasted time, money and energy from people going to college before they REALLY know what it is they want to get out of it.

UPDATE! – Monday, October 10, 2011

Lucky you! You’re reading this after the update! A “bipolar brother” (which is funny because the post right before this was one of me running “bipolar errands“), created a guide to getting what you want without formal credentials. It’s EXCELLENT! Are you in high school now? Start following these steps! You might be making more than your teachers before you graduate. Just finished high school? Do this instead of going to school right away! Show the blog post below to your parents. What? They think it’s a bad idea? Awesome! That must be willing to pay for your schooling for you! πŸ˜€ If I was in your situation, I’d take the money, go to school (DON’T SLACK! It’s a waste of fucking time!) AND rock the system below my first year (while taking a really light full-time schedule). Can’t find work? SHUT THE FUCK UP! You have internet! Read the post and start making magic happen!

[8 Steps to Getting What You Want… Without Formal Credentials]

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4 Responses to 4 Reasons Why You Should Wait To Go To College After High School

  1. Penney Morse says:

    I would have gone to school for……, not I would have went to school. Can’t give the reason–I’m not an English teacher, but I know that’s not correct:)

  2. Nathan Schultz says:

    How can you argue with the statistics?
    In Wisconsin, which reflects the national trend, Unemployment Rate for Working Age Population by Education Level consistently shows that those people with a HS diploma or lower have higher unemployment rates than those with BS/BA or above. The unemployment rate in 2009 for the US was nearly 11 percent for those who had a HS diploma, guess how bad it was for those with a BS/BA… only 4.5 percent. That gap is larger now. ‘

    Overall I agree with the proposed travel, It is SO DAMN VALUABLE … but that is what the 3-4 months in the summer is for!

    Last note: be careful when separating “College” from the “real world” …. college may in fact bring real world experiences.

    • miltownkid says:

      That’s why I had to start with “There is no end to the reasons why you should go to college after high school. “ πŸ˜‰ Stats, stats, stats… Didn’t you see that graph I attached! lol This is why I want to get into economics. Forget about unemployment rates. I want to know about the… “spiritual enlightenment” rates for BS/BA vs. high school. πŸ˜‰

      And I’m sure you’re familiar with it but what about the fact that… “The unemployment rate for black men in Milwaukee has reached a record high of 53 percent, according to a report released by the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.”

      Anyhow… For a lot of people (perhaps even most) going to college directly after school might be the best move. I just know (from my own experience) that it wasn’t the best move for me. Although… One could argue that it WAS the best move for me as I learned Chinese and met the right people allowing me to get over to Taiwan. But that could have also been accomplished by ONLY taking Chinese.

      Maybe a better post would be “Why You Shouldn’t Go To College Full-Time.” πŸ™‚

  3. Magdalicious says:

    See I’m behind you 100%… it’s not that you shouldn’t go to school… but I think going to university when you’re 18 and ‘retarded’ is really not the best way to go about it.

    Plus Universities are just a racket anyway, if they were really about educating then they would pair with businesses and company’s. A four year program would mean 2 years in and out of classrooms, switch hitting with 2 years in and out of interning and actually DOING what you’re supposed to be learning about. With a very few exceptions THAT would be how to really get the most out of an education.

    Instead you go to school for 4-6 years study whatever.. and in the end either hate it, there are no jobs in ‘your field’ anymore or you end up doing something completely different.
    Add that to the fact that those who DO go to work in their field constantly commenting on how what they learned in school had little to nothing to do with the reality of the situation (especially with Education and teaching degrees) and even a one armed monkey with a learning disability can work out that there are some rather fatal flaws in the system.

    Couple all of that with the fact that virtually no 18 year old knows their self, who they are, what they want, or pretty much anything (they think they do but then they grow up and realize they were a lost child). Now quick decide the direction for the rest of your life.

    Every single person who has waited to go to school and gone, has said it’s awesome. Because you’re grown up enough to have your priorities straight for what YOU want and you take it much more seriously than the flighty butterflies around you.

    Education is a tool, and it’s messed up the way the system works now.

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