Higher education is expensive, and with the current financial aid becoming more like a ball of chain dragging students through mountains of debt, we are forced to give higher learning a second look: Is college worth it? And more and more students seem to be saying that it isn’t.
In this article, we will delve into the numbers that will shed some light on why there are students who choose not to attend college at all, as well as those who did but did not graduate. This article, why students don’t go to college statistics, might also help you decide if college is the right path for you to take, as well as what other options you have ahead.
The reasons not to go to college statistics are an interesting blend of practical, generational, and economic factors. According to the National Student Clearing Research Center, the spring enrollment of 2018 records a 1.3% drop from 2017’s numbers. For the first time in ten years, the number of United States college enrollees fell under 18 million. Come 2019; college enrollees continue to drop in numbers, this time by 1.7% from the previous year’s total.
Over the years, the value that the American population has placed on higher education has diminished with the high cost of college education being a major deterrent.
Source: College Tuition Compare
Within the last ten years, college tuition fees have increased by more than 25%. While this may not be the entire reason and is sometimes used as one of the excuses for not going to college, the cost of higher education is an underlying factor. Students would rather chase economic opportunities than a degree that would cost them thousands of dollars to attain.
Students who decide to pursue college face a new set of challenges. According to studies, the likelihood of dropping out is high, especially for first-generation college students. Part-time students are also more likely to not finish college compared to their peers who attend full time. Although financial support is still the most significant issue, academic preparedness also plays a role in the dropout rate.
Source: Education DataDesigned by
Student loan is the primary assistance for students who cannot financially support their college education; it does not only cover tuition fees but also other expenses (i.e., books, room, and board, etc.) This is a tremendous help, especially if you are taking one of the most expensive majors or are studying in one of the most expensive US colleges or both. But while it helps you go through college, it is also a huge responsibility.
Below are some relevant student loan statistics:
While student loan momentarily takes the financial weight off of students’ shoulders during their four or six years in college, the burden of student loan repayment is handed back to them the moment they graduate or quit, which can last until retirement. Studies show that student debt is currently affecting not only young adults but generations of Americans, especially the age group in their retirement years.
A Forbes article claims that the unemployment rate of college graduates is at its highest in 2019. Underemployment statistics do not look better either. While college majors play a factor in the employment rate, statistics still show that there are 20 college majors recorded to have an underemployment rate of above 50%.
Source: New York Fed
College is seen as the beacon for students and families aiming for a brighter future. But with the critical state of student debt, preference for vocational or career and technical education courses is becoming more evident in studies on various trade school college statistics. These schools provide technical and practical training for students looking for career options that don’t require a college degree.
Keep in mind, however, that trade school is not a college replacement but a practical alternative, especially for students who don’t see a four-year college degree as a worthy investment. Although a bachelor’s degree and higher education remain as ideal choices, with all things considered, it is up to the student to determine if college is indeed worth it.
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