Why Earning a College Degree is Easier than You Think
Posted By Staff Writer on August 7, 2019
Over the last few decades, obtaining college degrees has become more and more popular. In fact, for many people, getting a college degree has become an integral part of The American Dream: Go to college, get a job, buy a house, and start a family. Unfortunately, difficult life circumstances, both financial and family, stop many Americans from completing their college degrees. Some students have to drop out of college for various reasons. Others are unable to attend school in the first place.
Earning a Degree Is More Possible Than EverIf you are in a situation where you cannot attend school or complete your degree, you know very well how frustratingly narrow your employment opportunities are. However, there is no reason to give up hope. It is actually easier to obtain a college degree and better your life circumstances than ever before. Continue reading to learn why earning a college degree is easier than you think and why you should obtain one.
Benefits of a DegreeThere are some pretty obvious benefits to having a degree such as a steady job or increased financial security. However, there are some additional perks to earning college degrees.
Job OpportunitiesThe more education you obtain, the more employment opportunities you can find that will better your life circumstances. No matter where you live, there will be a treasure trove of positions available for those who have earned the right degree. For example, in 2015, the United States had over 23 million jobs1 that required a bachelor's degree. Earning a college degree can open doors for your future that you never expected.
NetworkingNetworking can be an invaluable college resource. Establishing good relationships with the right people can be extremely beneficial when you are searching for jobs. Many college professors have good relationships with employers and companies in the workforce. Attending college and getting to know your professors may let you get a foot in the door for job positions that were previously unavailable to you.
Passing on the LegacyAttending college can not only benefit your life circumstances but may also impact the likelihood of your children attending college and obtaining college degrees of their own. In a study published by the U.S. Education Department's National Center for Education Statistics,2 students whose parents didn't attend college were significantly less likely to pursue and finish an undergraduate college degree than students whose parents had attended college. Attending and finishing your degree could help your family for generations to come.
Personal Development and Self-EsteemObtaining a college degree will help you develop more as a person. While you can most definitely learn much-needed skills for work, you can also improve your self-esteem. College degrees take a lot of hard work, and accomplishing something as big as a degree can leave you more confident to take on any challenge life throws your way.
College Resources and StrategiesPart of the reason it's so easy to obtain a degree nowadays is the number of paths and resources available to students. From financial aid to alternate forms of learning, almost anyone can get a degree.
Financial Aid & ScholarshipsOne of the most common reasons people don't finish their degrees is due to financial concerns. This may seem pretty obvious because let's face it, college can cost a lot of money, especially with the rising costs of tuition.3 Fortunately, financial aid is more plentiful than ever, especially in the form of Pell Grants and scholarships. In fact, there is so much financial aid that $2.6 billion dollars of grants went unclaimed last year.4 There are also numerous ways for you to lower the costs of earning your degree in general, including earning free college credit. Just a few minutes of research can go a long way in saving you money.
Go for an Associate's DegreeAnother reason many people do not pursue higher education is the time commitment. Many believe they need to toil for four years at a university in order to get a degree. The truth is you may not need to earn a bachelor's degree or higher to find a better job in a field you enjoy. You may only need to obtain an associate's degree, which equates to two years of study. Many community colleges and trade schools, as well as some traditional 4-year universities, offer associate's degrees. Associate's degrees have been around for quite a while and remain a common education goal. In 2015, roughly 42% of the population aged 25 and over had earned an associate's degree or higher.5 With less time and financial commitment, an associate's degree is more flexible in your daily schedule and may be all you need to secure the job you want.
Online CoursesIt seems with the invention of the internet that everything is going online these days, and higher education seems to be no exception. More and more universities across the country are offering online courses, allowing yet another option for potential students. While there still remains some skepticism about the effectiveness of online classes as a college resource, these criticisms are largely unfounded as there is plenty of evidence that shows that online learning can be just as effective as face-to-face instruction.6 Enrolling in online courses can come with many benefits, including:
- Lower costs of enrollment
- More comfortable learning environment
- Convenience and flexibility for your daily schedule
- No Commuting
- Improved technical skills