Disregard diplomas, dive for degrees

Micheal Simmons, Blue M Editor-In-Chief

In 51 days, one of the most important days of a student’s life will come and an overwhelming number of us will be considered college students instead of high school students. While this is true, the idea that pursuing a college degree is worth the debt, may not be.

The debate over college being worth it or not is nothing new, but recent studies may have nailed the coffin shut. A college education is proven to provide higher earning rates and life spans among college grads as well as better interpersonal skills.

Money is power in the modern world and college grads make more money. Who wouldn’t mind more money?

“Colleges and universities are still the best, most direct path to a good career that pays well,” Derek Newton, a contributor for Forbes said in his “Please Stop Asking Whether College is Worth it” article posted on the Forbes website.   

According to the Huffington post, individuals with a bachelor’s degree or higher make 84 percent more than an individual with just a diploma over a lifetime. That percentage has only risen from 75 percent back in 1999 and it shows no sign of stopping or even slowing down; if anything, it is speeding up due to the increase in skilled jobs that require a college degree.

While money is power, it falls short in comparison to the importance of life, which college grads also seem to enjoy more of. Who doesn’t like to live better and longer?

According to procon.org, a 2018 study showed that people 65 and older who also had a college degree spent more years in a stable mental condition than adults who did not have a college degree. There is a myriad of other medical complications that not having a college degree can be linked to such as smoking, not exercising, high amounts of stress and unhealthy blood pressure levels. In 2008 63 percent of college graduates reported working out vigorously at least once a week, 26 percent more than high school graduates. In the same year, only 23 percent of college graduates in the same age group were obese compared to 37 percent of high school graduates.

Last but not least, how can a person use their abundance of life and money if they do not know how to act in certain social situations? Yet another problem that a college degree can solve. According to Arthur Chickering, author of ‘Seven Vectors’ developing mature interpersonal relationships is an important stage in the long process that students go through as they attend college. In fact, this skill was so important that in a 1994 survey it was ranked as the most important skill learned while in college.

Do you want to be more successful and earn more money? Do you want to live better and longer? Do you want to be confident in social situations? If so, the genie that will grant your three wishes is inside of nearly every university.