Top 7 reasons why college matters (2023)

Top 7 reasons why college matters (1)

With more jobs requiring advanced education, a college degree can be critical to your success in today's workforce. Research shows that earning a degree can have a significant and far-reaching impact on your life. It also has the potential to help you make a positive impact on your family - and the world.

Here are 7 reasons why college might be important to you.

1. Earn more on average

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) notes that workers with college degrees generally earn more than those with only high school degrees. The median weekly earnings — or average amount in a data set — for people withassociate degreeEras$963 per weekin 2021. That's an increase of $154 per week, or over $8,000 more per year than those with only a high school diploma.

employees with aBachelor degreeearned an average of $1,334 per week – $525 more per week than non-colleague workers and an increase of more than $27,000 per year. AMaster-Studiumhelped workers earn even more, averaging $1,574 per week, $765 more per week than those with only a high school degree and nearly $40,000 more per year.

For example, if your professional career spans 40 years, according to this data, you could earn $320,000 more with an associate's degree, more than $1 million with a bachelor's degree, or more than $1.5 million with a master's degree dollars more than a worker with no college education.

2. Increase job opportunities

"Bachelor required" is often mentioned in job descriptions or as a desired qualification. A 2020 survey conducted by the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) in partnership with Hanover Research found that a growing number of employers view college as a good investment. Of those surveyed, 87% said college is "definitely" or "probably" worth it (Font PDF AAC&U).

A degree program that includes bachelor's and associate's degrees offers a combination ofgeneral education coursesand specialized learning in a discipline that interests you. With these degrees, you will develop both broad and subject-specific knowledge.

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You, too, can have a chance to become important, tough, and stronginterpersonal skillsParticipation in experiential learning opportunities, which are relevant hands-on experiences that you can transfer to the professional world.experiential learningtakes many forms and can exist both inside and outside the classroom.

For example, earn alevel of cybersecurity, you can join your college's National Cyber​​League (NCL) team to test your working knowledge of cryptography and other concepts you might encounter while working in arole of cybersecurity.

Other types of experiential learning you can use in college include project-based assignments working with real organizations, internships, and student clubs and organizations. You can add this valuable experience to your resume, work portfolio, andat job interviewsto show employers that you are a competitive candidate.

Earning a college degree can also lead to greater professional stability. According to BLS information3.5% of workerswith a bachelor's degree were unemployed in 2021, compared to 6.2% of workers with only a college degree.

3. Expand your possibilities

A college degree could be the additional qualification you need to land that dream job you've always wanted. The bachelor's degree also allows you to view your work as a career and not just a job.

a 2016Pew Research CenterAccording to the report, 77% of workers with a college degree and 60% of workers with a bachelor's degree believe their work gives them self-esteem, compared to just 38% of those with only a high school diploma or less.

This idea still exists today. The Lumina Foundation and Gallup found in The State of Higher Education 2022 report that 61% of students enrolled in college graduate to find more rewarding jobs (Luminafonte PDF).

Top 7 reasons why college matters (2)An example of this is the newly foundedVictoria Maas '22, who, with the help of her bachelor’s degree, was able to advance into the teaching profession. Maas is amilitary spouse, and during the pandemic and her husband's outreach, she has been homeschooling her eldest daughter. This experience inspired her to continue teaching and now, with her graduation, Meuse is starting a new role at her children's primary school.

Maas knows themBachelor's degree in PsychologyIt has helped her understand her work better and now she wants to pursue a master's degree.

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“At the moment I really enjoy working at my children's school. I think that the psychological background helped me a lot to understand the students," says Meuse. "I decide if I want mineMaster's degree in PsychologyOr mineMasters in Education, but I'm not done yet."

By working on your degree, you are choosing a degree that interests you in an area in which you want to work or grow.

4. Prepare for the future

Even as a student, you can acquire practical life skills. For example, you must meet the regular assignment deadlines for each class. The discipline andTime Management StrategiesWhat you learn along the way can be applied to all aspects of your life, whether it's work projects or your busy family schedule.

Top 7 reasons why college matters (3)A college degree can also affect your family members and your future. ForTarah Theis '22, win aBachelors in Communicationit meant setting an example for her children. She said they all want to go to college now after seeing her mom do it. "That's the biggest achievement for me... starting a legacy and showing them a good way forward," Theis said.

Because your earning potential is usually higher after graduating, your degree can bring financial stability to you and your family. Your school's financial advisors can guide you through more than just thathow to pay college. With their tips and advice, you can discover useful budgeting techniques and learn more about financing options and processes that may be relevant for future investments such as buying a car or a house.

Increasingly, owners have a university education.Ponto2, an organization that reports trends in the real estate market, analyzed data from the US Census and found that 70% of homeowners in 2020 had a college education. 40 percent had at least a bachelor's degree.

Top 7 reasons why college matters (4)Marilynn Hymon-Williams '22sees her education as a stepping stone to a brighter future—and a better retirement. After you complete itBachelor of Health Administration, I was already thinking about the Master. "I invest in (the) future because a lot of people think it's over when you get old," Hymon-Williams said. "It's not over yet. Uh-uh, no. It has only just begun.”

5. Create new relationships

College can be more than just an education; It can be a place where you form all kinds of new relationships. First, you can connect to aacademic supervisor- someone who will support you throughout your college experience, planning courses, directing university resources, encouraging and guiding you to personal success, and much more. Faculty - the course leaders - can also help you understand your responsibilities and what is expected of you as a student.

As soon as the class starts, you will be surrounded by classmates. Sharing with peers through activities like group work or class discussions can be a great way to build a professional network.Meet your future partnerand make lasting friendships.

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Top 7 reasons why college matters (5)IfLydia Alonci '18was offered a full-time position while studyingGrace Hopper's Annual Conference, she told her potential employer that she would only take the job if she would give her a friend from SNHU,Patrícia Odani Mukuka '18, '21G, also a chance. This prompted the organization to offer Odani Mukuka an internship. That experience later grew into a full-time job, illustrating the power of the friendships you can make on your college journey.

The relationships you form in college can become the foundation of yoursprofessional network. You can network with alumni during your studies. After you graduate, you will also become a member of an alumni association. An alumni association is full of graduates,known as alumniwho play an important role in a university community. You give back in many ways, including community service, attending and organizing events, and mentoring current students. Alumni work in a variety of fields, and building relationships with others in this network can lead to career opportunities.

6. Achieve your personal goals

Top 7 reasons why college matters (6)Although your degree can bring many benefits to your professional goals, graduating from college can be as important a personal goal as it was forJohn Reck '22.

Reck is a 1% survivor of a rare infection called septicemia. He also suffered a heart attack, was in a coma, had 18 surgeries, and lost the ability to walk and speak.

"Life goes on around you," he said of his time in the hospital during his health crisis. "It's lonely." When Reck was on the mend, he knew his next destination. After 30 years he would go back to school and this time it was for him.

"School came down on me like a bell," Reck said. "I'll finish my studies and here I am, alive." Now he's holding hisBachelor Grafikdesign. With the achievement of his personal goal, he has also achieved a professional one. He landed his dream job as a graphic designer for a Boston law firm.

Top 7 reasons why college matters (7)In a recent survey*, 500 people were asked what the greatest benefit of a degree was, and 57% said they had achieved a personal goal for themselves. Forfirst generationFor students, graduation is an important personal goal for them and their families.

New college graduatesMarlene Riley '22eMichael Riley '18You, woman and man, walked across the stage together. Marlene is an immigrant from Peru and Michael is a senior and they are both first generation college students. Graduating from college was a personal goal they achieved together, and sharing the Memorial stage was even more special.

"He's my team and we did it together," said Marlene.

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7. Make a difference

Earning your college degree can also improve the lives of those around you. The College Board's 2019 report on the benefits of higher education for individuals and society finds that college graduates are more likely to donate money to charities, volunteer, and vote (College Board PDF Source).

Top 7 reasons why college matters (8)Some colleges encourage students to give back by organizing volunteer opportunities. SNHU conducts an annual nonprofit initiativeGlobal Days of Service. More than 1,200 students served 135 organizations in 2022. As a result, a new non-profit organization was formed. The site manager of a project,Cassi key '22, who recently graduatedOnline English Coursefrom SNHU, was so inspired by her involvement in Global Days of Service that she startedbee friends, an organization focused on planting seeds and promoting environmental education.

Like Key, you may find yourself motivated to change the world after graduating from college. Many students learn about topics such associal changeorenvironmental sustainabilityinfluence in many ways during their courses and continue to do so.

AArticle in TIME magazinenotes that higher education is working fast to improve climate education in many areas, including architecture, economics and law. As a result of this new emphasis on ecology and sustainability in higher education, graduates from various disciplines are now applying their knowledge to improve sustainability practices and address climate change across sectors. You can also take a direct degree on these subjects. For example, SNHU offers aDegree in Environmental SciencesIt is aDegree in Geoscienceswith opportunities to prepare for a career in sustainability and conservation.

A higher education can also give you the chance to make an impact in other ways. You can study in a field that will help you improve people's lives.

Some degree programs that focus on helping others are:

  • Degree in Pedagogy
  • health grade
  • Bachelor's degree in Human Services
  • Degree in Nursing
  • Bachelor's degree in Psychology and Counseling

College can also broaden your horizons by offering you diverse perspectives. Being able to engage with other perspectives can lead you to better understand people who are different from you and situations that you have never personally encountered. That can lead to thisincreased empathy, improve your communication skills and build your confidence as you strive to make the world a better place.

A degree can change your life. Find the SNHUOnline college degreethat can best help you achieve your goals.

Danielle Gagnon is a freelance writer specializing in higher education. Connect with her atLinkedIn.

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*Survey Methodology: This survey was conducted online in the United States by Kantar on behalf of Southern New Hampshire University in December 2021. The opinions of 500 respondents from the general population were collected from their general survey. For a full research methodology, contact Megan Bond


Top 7 reasons why college matters? ›

Key Takeaways

Before making your choice, consider these factors: cost, location, size, your interests, campus life, graduation rates, and the potential return on your investment.

What are some reasons why college is important? ›

15 Reasons Why College is Important for Your Career
  • College prepares you for the workforce. ...
  • College can help you network with other professionals. ...
  • College can teach you how to think critically and solve problems. ...
  • College can help you stand out from other applicants for high-level jobs.
Dec 22, 2022

What are 3 reasons to choose a college? ›

Top 10 Factors for Choosing a College
  • Safety.
  • Academic Support and Career Services. ...
  • Campus Life. ...
  • Athletics and Extracurricular Activities. ...
  • Majors and Minors. ...
  • Class Size. ...
  • Cost and Fees. ...
  • Location and Distance From Home. ...

What are the 5 most important factors in deciding a college? ›

Key Takeaways

Before making your choice, consider these factors: cost, location, size, your interests, campus life, graduation rates, and the potential return on your investment.

What is the thesis statement of 3 reasons college still matters? ›

Andrew Delbanco, a well-known author, wrote an article titled “3 Reasons Why College Still Matters” in which he argues that college still matters because of its economic advantage, political involvement, and the advancement of the community as whole.

What are 5 benefits of going to college? ›

10 Benefits of a College Degree
  • Earn more money, experience less unemployment. ...
  • Raise your voice! ...
  • Call the shots—be your own boss. ...
  • Transform your family tree. ...
  • Invest in and shape our democracy. ...
  • Never stop evolving. ...
  • Pay it forward. ...
  • Bring your ideas to fruition.
Feb 28, 2022

What does college teach you? ›

But college is an important time for you to learn how to dress, speak, write and carry yourself like the professional you will soon become. Other important skills include day-to-day employment essentials, such as working on a team, handling big projects, and staying organized.

What are the pros and cons of college? ›

Is College Right for You?
Pros of Attending CollegeCons of Attending College
Higher earning potentialHigh cost
Access to more jobsOpportunity cost of time spent not working
More learning opportunitiesThe availability of high-paying, no-degree jobs
Networking opportunitiesUnderemployed college graduates
6 more rows
Jan 23, 2023

What are the benefits of choosing the right college? ›

Importance of Choosing the Right University for YOU
  • Choosing the Right University Is Critical for Your Mental Health. ...
  • The Right University Has Your Desired Major. ...
  • The Right School Excels at Your Major. ...
  • The Right College Has Activities You'll Enjoy. ...
  • Choose Your College Wisely.
Aug 19, 2020

What are 3 reasons college should be free? ›

Reasons Why College Should Be Free
  • Universal Access to Public Education. ...
  • Less Student Debt. ...
  • Better Education. ...
  • Economic Uplift. ...
  • Equality of Opportunity. ...
  • A Stronger Workforce. ...
  • Helps Students Focus on Studying. ...
  • Other Countries Demonstrate that it Works.
Mar 9, 2023

What 5 things do colleges look at when choosing students? ›

Good grades, a challenging high school curriculum, standardized test scores, extracurriculars, and a strong essay are a few key factors admissions officers assess. Each university may emphasize different elements of the application process.

What 3 factors are most important for student success in college? ›

Factors That Influence a Student's Success in College
  • Family and Peer Support. No matter how independent the student, successfully transitioning into college often begins with strong family support. ...
  • Academic Habits. ...
  • Life Skills. ...
  • Decision-Making.

Why did you choose this college? ›

College authorities want to know more about your academic interests and commitments. Talk about the specific educational, research, and other academic opportunities offered by the college that appeal to you. Expand on this idea by talking about how these opportunities help support your future goals.

Do you think college still matters? ›

It is economic, civic, societal, and in a word, real. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, someone with a college degree will earn $524 more per week, $27,000 more per year, and $1 million more over a lifetime than someone with only a high school diploma or less.

What is a good thesis statement for college essay? ›

A good thesis has two parts. It should tell what you plan to argue, and it should "telegraph" how you plan to argue—that is, what particular support for your claim is going where in your essay. First, analyze your primary sources. Look for tension, interest, ambiguity, controversy, and/or complication.

What are the 3 C's of a thesis statement? ›

Your thesis is one statement at the end of your introduction and should be clear, concise, and arguable.

What are two benefits of going to college? ›

Here's a list of advantages of earning a college degree:
  • Higher income. Having a college education can increase your earning potential. ...
  • Employment benefits. ...
  • More job opportunities. ...
  • Job security. ...
  • Job satisfaction. ...
  • Networking. ...
  • Personal development. ...
  • Career advancement.
Feb 3, 2023

Why a college degree will change your life? ›

A college degree opens up more opportunities, even in fields that aren't in your major. Improve Discipline and Develop Strong Character. Obtaining a degree takes discipline and a will to succeed. By getting your degree, you overcome procrastination and learn to do what it takes to reach your goal.

What is the value of a college education? ›

“Overall … the return on investment for a college degree is substantial—worth upwards of $800,000 or more in increased earnings over a lifetime,” according to the article, “The Wage Gap Between College and High School Grads Just Hit a Record High.”

How does college develop a person? ›

College graduates demonstrate a greater ability to make reasoned, reflective, and unbiased judgments. ⌘ Studies have shown that college helps individuals increase awareness, dialogue, and involvement in racial understanding, openness to diversity and gender-role attitudes, and parts of the political process.

How does college prepare you for life? ›

Getting a college education doesn't mean just absorbing facts and figures. It means building the skills and qualities you need to learn, think and create on your own — making you attractive to employers. You've already started learning these skills in high school, but college helps you fully develop them.

What's the most important thing you learned in college? ›

Life Lessons Students Learn in College
  • Time waits for Nobody. One of the best life lessons you learn in college is the significance of time management. ...
  • Proper Communication can make Situations Better. ...
  • Importance of taking Responsibilities in Life. ...
  • Know the worth of Relationships. ...
  • Don't Be Afraid to Take Chances.
Feb 1, 2019

Is college necessary for success? ›

If you're wondering if college is necessary to have a successful career, it depends on what you want to pursue. You don't need a Bachelor's degree to succeed in most careers. Instead of four-year degrees, more companies are looking at a candidate's skills and potential.

What are 3 disadvantages of going to college? ›

Before attending college, make sure you consider the following drawbacks:
  • You Likely Will Graduate With Student Loan Debt. ...
  • High-Paying Jobs Aren't Guaranteed. ...
  • It Can Take More Than Four Years to Graduate.
Jun 21, 2022

What are 2 disadvantages of college? ›

  • College uses a fairly standard academic structure for education that not every student thrives in. ...
  • Not every career choice is best learned in an academic environment. ...
  • The “well-rounded” approach of colleges can be counter-productive with certain technical careers. ...
  • College is expensive.
Feb 23, 2023

How do you know if a college is right for you? ›

Here are some aspects to consider:
  1. Size.
  2. Location.
  3. Distance from home.
  4. Available majors and classes.
  5. Housing options.
  6. Makeup of the student body.
  7. Available extracurricular activities.
  8. Campus atmosphere.

Is the benefit of college worth it? ›

Investing in college has historically yielded significant benefits, including greater career opportunities, higher earning potential and a better quality of life for millions of Americans. The data has also reinforced the value of a college education, both financially and otherwise.

Should you say a college is your first choice? ›

While you might not want to come outright and say it, there is no harm in telling your college that they are your top choice. However, you should use creative avenues to express your interest. Many college essays ask you why you want to attend, so this is the perfect opportunity.

Does everyone need college? ›

Decide what career you want first and check if a degree is needed. Even if a degree is not needed in the beginning, it may be required in order for you to move higher up within your company or field. That being said, you can certainly be successful without a college degree — your skills and talents can get you hired.

Why college should be free for everyone? ›

Free College Would Drive Economic Growth

This springs up the question, “Should higher education be free?” In different types of economies, as college students graduate without debt, this would give them the ability to earn, save and spend immediately, which could stimulate the economy.

What would happen if college was free for everyone? ›

Key Takeaways. Research shows that free tuition programs encourage more students to attend college and increase graduation rates, which creates a better-educated workforce and higher-earning consumers who can help boost the economy.

What is the most important thing colleges look at? ›

Courses and Grades

A student's grades in college-preparatory classes remain the most significant factor in college admission decisions.

What is one thing I definitely want a college to know about me? ›

Admission officers want to know who you are beyond just your grades and test scores. Evidence of empathy, initiative, resilience, integrity, grit, and concern for others in your college application can boost your chances of acceptance.

What are the 7 keys to college success? ›

Keys to Academic Success
  • Accept Responsibility. Remember that you alone are responsible for your academic achievement. ...
  • Discipline Yourself. ...
  • Manage Your Time. ...
  • Stay Ahead. ...
  • Help Yourself Then Ask for Help. ...
  • Be Present and Prompt. ...
  • Don't Quit. ...
  • Communicate with Instructors.

What are the six student success factors? ›

Success Factors Framework (Six Success Factors)

This research also demonstrates that students are more likely to succeed when they are directed, focused, nurtured, engaged, connected, and valued.

What are 3 things you can do to be successful in college? ›

How to Be Successful in College: 9 Tips
  • Know your goals and values.
  • Turn long-term goals into short-term plans.
  • Go to class and attend office hours.
  • Build skills relevant to your coursework.
  • Assess your learning style.
  • Try new things.
  • Maintain a social balance.
  • Manage your time with intention.
May 17, 2023

Does college make a difference? ›

The evidence that a college degree significantly improves one's employment prospects and earnings potential is overwhelming. Bachelor's degree holders are half as likely to be unemployed as their peers who only have a high school degree and they make $1.2 million in additional earnings on average over their lifetime.

Does your college major really matter? ›

One of the reasons many students stress about their choice of major is due to the mistaken belief that their major will determine their career. While your degree may come with an obvious career path, you don't have to follow it. Your future career and success are not at the mercy of the degree you choose.

Is college worth it yes or no? ›

College Graduates Usually Make More Money

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, graduates with a bachelor's degree or higher had median usual weekly earnings of $1,556 when working full-time, compared to just $866 for high school graduates with no college studies.

How do you write a strong college thesis? ›

A good thesis statement will usually include the following four attributes:
  1. take on a subject upon which reasonable people could disagree.
  2. deal with a subject that can be adequately treated given the nature of the assignment.
  3. express one main idea.
  4. assert your conclusions about a subject.

What is an example of a strong thesis statement? ›

A strong thesis statement is specific.

For example, if you're writing a seven-to-ten page paper on hunger, you might say: World hunger has many causes and effects.

What is a hook for an essay? ›

A hook is an opening statement (which is usually the first sentence) in an essay that attempts to grab the reader's attention so that they want to read on. It can be done by using a few different types of hooks, which are a question, quote, statistic, or anecdote.

What are 4 characteristics of a strong thesis statement? ›

Features of A Successful Thesis
  • A thesis must consist of a claim. ...
  • A thesis should not be obviously true or false. ...
  • A thesis should not be overly abstract or general. ...
  • A thesis should be original. ...
  • A thesis should be arguable. ...
  • A thesis should be clear. ...
  • A thesis should be concise. ...
  • A thesis should be obvious to your reader.

How long should a thesis statement be? ›

Thesis statements are often one sentence, however, in some cases (e.g. a very in-depth or detailed paper) it may be appropriate to include a longer thesis statement. You should ask your professor for their advice if you think you need to use a thesis statement that is longer than one sentence.

What is most important in college? ›

Courses and Grades

A student's grades in college-preparatory classes remain the most significant factor in college admission decisions. Highly selective colleges look for students who: Complete core academic requirements.

What is the most important thing you learned in college? ›

Life Lessons Students Learn in College
  • Time waits for Nobody. One of the best life lessons you learn in college is the significance of time management. ...
  • Proper Communication can make Situations Better. ...
  • Importance of taking Responsibilities in Life. ...
  • Know the worth of Relationships. ...
  • Don't Be Afraid to Take Chances.
Feb 1, 2019

What are the best things in college? ›

College Bucket List: Activities & Fun Things to Do for the BEST Experience
  • Ace a Final. ...
  • Apply for Your Dream Internship. ...
  • Apply To Graduate School. ...
  • Attend a College Formal Dance. ...
  • Attend a Fraternity/Sorority Party. ...
  • Attend a School Sporting Event. ...
  • Be a Part of a Sports Team. ...
  • Become a Foodie.

Is college worth it why or why not? ›

Investing in college has historically yielded significant benefits, including greater career opportunities, higher earning potential and a better quality of life for millions of Americans. The data has also reinforced the value of a college education, both financially and otherwise.

How does not going to college affect you? ›

People without college educations also are less likely to vote than people with them, according to the Census Bureau; half as likely to volunteer, the College Board says; and more likely to divorce, reports the Bureau of Labor Statistics; almost half of married couples with less education split up, compared to 30 ...

What is the most important skill for success in college? ›

Communication and Interpersonal Skills

Face-to-face communication skills are important in college as you must engage with instructors to be successful in classes and gain future employment references. You can improve these skills by conversing with instructors in one-on-one settings or joining a study group.

What does college teach you about the real world? ›

Developing your communication skills, becoming more efficient at time management, and changing your approach to overcoming challenges are just some of the important life lessons you learn in college that can't be found in any textbook.


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