Last month, I shared an article that encouraged us to have a plan for dealing with student debt. I think this topic resonated with a lot of people because, let’s face it, many of us are looking for ways to manage our money better and save for the future.
Today I’m sharing a funny, yet revealing, Forbes article entitled Oh, So That’s Why College is So Expensive. As you can probably infer from the title, it cleverly exposes where all of our well earned money is going when students gleefully receive their offers of admission at their colleges or universities of choice and parents begrudgingly pick up the pen to sign their lives away.
The article helps to explain, in a humorous way, why tuition costs are skyrocketing, leading to more and more students having to penny pinch in order to avoid mounting debt.
A quick tour around a modern campus these days and you’ll see state of the art facilities, new buildings popping up at every corner, and all the amenities of a trendy little village. We are accustomed to having these modern conveniences around us, and campuses are bound to evolve with the times. Especially if these upgrades make the campus look more appealing to wide-eyed students taking their first tour of college life.
But at what cost?
Recruitment is competitive and, as consumers of education, we need to think about the investment we’re making. Unfortunately we may not always be able to opt out of all of the fancy features and facilities (I discovered that the University of Missouri, featured in this photo, boasts a ‘lazy river’ and spa in their aquatics center!) But it can’t hurt to look into it if you see some offered that you don’t want to subscribe to.
Rather, I’m simply trying to reinforce, through the humor in this article, the importance of “the plan.” That is, the career plan and the financial plan to go along with it. With a sound plan in place, not only will you avoid accumulating the extra debt that inevitably accompanies chronic indecision and/or innocent misdirection, but you will likely save precious time and avoid wasting years of your life doing something you don’t want to do. Oh, and of course, start making money and getting on with your career.
I understand that not all 19 year olds are spending their free time planning and thinking about their career plan and main priorities in life. They’re likely trying to skillfully juggle their time in order to figure out how to go out on Thursday night and not flunk their midterm on Friday morning.
And that’s just fine. Just make sure you keep an eye on your future while you’re at it.
p.s. it’s OK if you’re still deciding whether college/university is for you. Our career assessment, the JCE, suggests top jobs aligned with your interests at several different training and education levels. You can explore them all and make a decision based on what you feel fits you best.