This is a question that many young people (and perhaps a few adults) have asked themselves. They look at the cost of college, the commitment in terms of time, and they consider the debt to the bank that they will have after graduating. And then they think of all those famous people who didn’t go to college or who dropped out. John D. Rockefeller, Simon Cowell, Abraham Lincoln, Michael J. Fox, Sean Connery and Walt Disney all have in common that they never went to college, and yet they all became incredibly successful in what they did. So why bother with college or community college?
One of the simplest answers is that I am certain that all the above people mentioned advised their children to go to college. Just because a person triumphed against the odds without a college education doesn’t mean that they are anti the idea of college. They are more than likely smart enough to realize the importance of education and the advantages that it brings.
Learning more than a subject
When you go to college or community college you learn far more than information about a particular subject; you learn mental skills that employers will value. You learn to gist ideas, to understand the principles of an argument, you learn to debate, you learn to analyze. With these skills you are equipped to deal with information. That is vital in the present age of information that we now live in.
Going to college you also learn to get on with people. For those who live away from home it is a time to learn how to be independent. You learn to manage your own finances, to do your own grocery shopping and to cook your own food. If you share accommodation with others you learn how to cooperate and to be diplomatic at times.
Entering the right circles
Those who go to college get to meet other people in higher education. Some of these people will go on to hold important positions in society. Innumerable people who attended college have benefitted from the friendships they have made at college. These contacts serve them well later on.
In Britain the Bullingdon Club and in America the Skull and Bones Club have been elite clubs for college students that have produced many Prime Ministers and Presidents. I’m not saying that if you go to Yale or Oxford you will end up leading your country but it is no accident that these leaders got where they did. They had the help of the contacts they made at college.
College is fun
This last point is important. For those who think studying is a drag, it should be remembered that most college students remember the great times they had college. They remember the parties, the foolish pranks, the love affairs, the politics, the way that life seemed fuller, richer and full of possibility.
Compare that to how many young and unemployed people feel who don’t get a college education.
Really, you should enroll. Community college is a good way to get on the educational ladder if money and/or academic ability is an issue.