When the going gets tough…this son wants to stop going…to college. Is a college degree worthwhile in today’s job market? Is a degree from Harvard as valuable as one from Online Masters Degree or your local community college? How much effort should be spent on higher education? — BadWitch
Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…
Dear GWBW — Our son wants to drop out of college. He’s a senior but since most of his junior year, this former high school straight-A student has been barely passing his courses. He feels getting a degree in this market is meaningless as there are no jobs. What do you think? — Pre-qualifier
All things equal, this is what I believe: to go further in life, finish what you start. While I’m fully aware that there may be many reasons to dropout and that college is not for everyone, this doesn’t seem to have been your son’s case as he qualified with a strong GPA, kept his grades up for his previous three university years, and only now seems to have decided he’s done and is throwing in the towel (attitudinally if not literally, yet). Investigate to make sure something else (that wasn’t his choice) hasn’t happened to him that triggered such a behavioral change — something that may require your (or professionals’) help — like an illness or abusive incident. Barring such external situations, your Pre-qualifer needs to slow down to step up and look at his real motives against the long road before him that is his future.
Yes the job market is down and college loans are expensive to pay back, but both are achievable with his diligence and tenacity. He’s so close now, why handicap himself needlessly (an undergrad degree (BA/BS) is a minimal requirement for most jobs today)? I picked up a great life character assessment tool inadvertently from a long-ago writing workshop: Character isn’t what he says, but what he does. Your son has barely made his appearance in Act 1.
Stay in school,
Your best bet is to help your son move beyond apathy. Basing your future on a pessimistic outlook is betting on failure. And why play the game without a winning hand of cards?
Your son is so close to the finish line. maybe he’s not a star ‘A’ student anymore, but if he’s still passing it’s worth completing the journey. The future available to a college graduate has more possibilities than one without. No matter what the economic future is in this country, it is better to be more prepared for greatness rather than less.
Help your son see the possibilities he may be giving up. It’s time to realize that the future starts now. If you want all the opportunities, you have o take the one’s available to you in the now. Cause really that’s all any of us have—now.
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