Trinity College during the summer with two attractive female students walking on campus. The image was created using Canva Pro.

Do you need to go to college? Will going into debt for college help your future? Is college worth it? Here is a look at why attending college may not be worth it.

Is College Worth It?

Financial Considerations

The cost of obtaining a college degree is a primary source of financial stress for many students. It burdens them with debt and prevents them from saving and investing for their future. In fact, according to Statista, the average cost of attending a four-year university ranges from $24,000 to $60,000 per year. Students typically will spend anywhere from $100,000 to $250,000 to earn a four-year degree.

Furthermore, research by shows that college costs have increased by a staggering 143% for full-time students since 1963. This alarming fact indicates that the burden of student debt will only worsen. According to The College Investor, the average student loan debt balance in 2024 was $37,718.

Student debt is a typical unsecured debt many Americans have. Many will continue to pay off their student loans after graduation. This debt can hinder your ability to save and invest money.

Consider the critical long-term financial impacts of attending college and accumulating debt. You can explore alternative options to avoid taking on too much debt and compromising your financial well-being.

Educational Considerations

When it comes to education, we need to be smart about how we invest our money. College education is often seen as the gold standard, but is it really worth it? Let’s face it: college is just a more advanced version of high school. Students learn from textbooks, take quizzes and tests, and gain book knowledge that often never translates to practical skills.

Even in specialized fields like information and cybersecurity, most graduate programs offer limited opportunities for hands-on learning, relying instead on outdated textbooks and exams.

The education system only follows one method of learning: reading and exams. There are more effective ways to learn. There are many ways to learn.

The better way to learn is to take digital courses on topics of interest to you. These courses are designed to provide critical information in a condensed format so you can complete them in a few days. Unlike college courses, digital courses focus on practical skills you can apply in the real world.

The best part? Digital courses can provide a certificate showing that you completed the course. You can then add the digital course’ certificate to your LinkedIn profile and resume, providing tangible evidence of your skills and knowledge.

So, before you invest your money in a college education, consider the benefits of digital courses. With digital courses, you can learn practical skills that will help you succeed in the real world, all in a fraction of the time and money it takes to earn a degree.

Lifestyle Considerations

Attending college can lead you towards negative lifestyle habits that can be detrimental to your personal growth. Unfortunately, the college party scene often reinforces these habits, which include excessive drinking, smoking, promiscuity, gambling, and seeking validation from others.

However, there is an alternative. Instead of attending college, you can develop positive lifestyle habits that benefit your overall well-being. Doing so may make you more successful than your peers who decided to attend college. You can start working on these habits while working or starting your own business, allowing you to build a foundation for a fulfilling and successful life.

Do not let college dictate your life choices and habits. Choose the path less traveled and focus on developing positive habits that will benefit you in the long run. Doing so may unlock your full potential and help you discover success beyond your wildest dreams.

Will College Help You To Get A Career?

It is a common misconception that a college degree is the key to landing your dream job. However, the reality is that many college-educated individuals end up working in entry-level retail jobs.

I have had to work primarily in retail and merchandising jobs, even though I attended college and graduate school. No employer would hire me because I lacked the proper work experience, and they did not care that I spent nearly a decade in the higher education system.

Your work experience, not your academic background, truly matters to companies. Having hands-on experience in your field can make you a more valuable candidate than someone with a degree but no practical experience.

Do not forget that you can succeed in your career without a college degree. With the right skills and a winning attitude in interviews, you can demonstrate your capabilities and secure the job you want. So do not be discouraged if you do not have a degree—focus on building your skills and experience, and the opportunities will follow.

Dilemma Of Getting A College Degree Versus Work Experience

Choosing between college and work experience can be a daunting decision for young people. While college can provide you with valuable knowledge, many employers now favor candidates with work experience and skills over those with a college degree.

It may be more beneficial to prioritize work experience over earning a college degree. Work experience allows you to gain hands-on experience that employers may require. Studying and acquiring the necessary certifications and skills can make you more competitive and help you work up in a company or industry.

In today’s job market, staying competitive requires acquiring the skills and experience employers value most. You must carefully decide whether attending college or gaining work experience is best to make informed decisions that align with your career goals.


Is obtaining a college degree worth it? That depends on your career aspirations and whether or not you think it’s worth taking on debt. In some cases, it may not be worth it, as you spend most of your twenties learning theoretical knowledge that is irrelevant to the practical skills needed to secure a job.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of Secure Single. It is intended for informational and educational purposes only and is not investment, financial, or legal advice. Consult with a financial or legal professional before making investment or legal decisions. James Bollen is the author of Thriving Solo: How to Flourish and Live Your Perfect Life (Without A Soulmate). It is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.
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James Bollen is the Founder and President of Secure Single. He is an entrepreneur and a content creator with the goal of helping all different types of singles to learn to thrive as a single person.
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