There’s a wide and growing perception that college degrees are useless and a waste of money. Setting aside the fact that the value of education should extend beyond what kind of job it can give you, the data show that college graduates still fare better than non-college grads in terms of employment and income. Except for the wealthiest Americans, everyone is doing worse now than they were before the recession, but to varying degrees.
Note that this isn’t to say that people without degrees are losers or idiots. There are different kinds of intelligence and different ways of being educated. School isn’t for everyone, just as many vocational and technical occupations aren’t for everyone. In fact, many of the so-called “low skilled” jobs that are often low-paying and looked down upon are actually quite difficult for most people. They’re vital to our society and economy and are in high-demand as well.
Plus, there are many people who simply couldn’t go to school due to extenuating circumstances. That doesn’t make them dumb. Similarly, not everyone who goes to school is a privileged brat who thought they’d make tons of money when they were done.
The economy has been a complex mess for some time (even before the recession), and it’s been hard for almost everyone to find a path that is clearly stable and sustainable.
I know I’m veering into a tangent, but I think it’s time we change the way we value certain occupations and backgrounds. I also think its important not to judge someone’s personal worth and dignity based on how much money they make and what kind of work they do.
Just some thoughts. I encourage you all to weigh in and give me your feedback.