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Thread: College

  1. #1
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    College

    Considering how many posts Iíve seen regarding the correlations between college, success, and happiness, I feel inclined to make this thread...itíll also admittedly help me out quite a bit.

    In a variety of threads in the GD forum, Iíve seen folks debate about whether or not college is worth it, if it makes you happy, etc etc.

    Iíve seen guys like Jeffy and others who are successful people and while they value education - they became successful without college

    I also read Dugmetís most recent post about what success is and that he could very well be happy without making the most amount of money. Regardless of the case, a common theme I see on PSD is people advocating against college if one doesnít know what they want to do as far as career goes...the college discussion seems to go on in several different threads so making this thread personally gives me a better idea of both where others stand and what potential paths I could possibly take.

    I appreciate all insight but both stating your age and when/where you went to college would also help me narrow it down

    My series of questions is;

    1. Should everyone go to college?

    2. What should people do instead of college?

    3. Careers that donít require a college degree?

    4. College or trade school?

    5. If you did go to college, did you know what you wanted to do when you entered or did you figure it out along the way?

    5a. If you knew, how and when did you know? If you figured it out along the way, how/when?

    6. What should one do if theyíre enrolled in college but donít have a set career plan?

    7. Did a college degree significantly affect the amount of money you bring home? (I know the answer is typically yes but a before and after would be cool)

    8. Do you regret going or not going to college?

    9. If they donít have to take out loans - should everyone go to college?

    If you have any other insight that I might be neglecting, that would also be appreciated. Iím not enrolled at the moment and I might go back next semester but itís honestly a tricky situation with my family life at the moment but thatís beside the point.

    Thanks in advance.
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  2. #2
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    1. Should everyone go to college?

    No.

    2. What should people do instead of college?

    Find yourself. Travel. Grow up a little. Live your life. Avoid debt. Repeat, avoid debt.

    5. If you did go to college, did you know what you wanted to do when you entered or did you figure it out along the way?

    I went at age 17 because my mother told me if I did not go right after H.S. I would never go. She was wrong. I dropped out and went back at age 29. After finishing a second undergraduate degree (2-year degree in one discipline, 4-yar in another), I worked for a year and discovered my real passion so I went back for a graduate degree at age 32.

    6. What should one do if theyíre enrolled in college but donít have a set career plan?

    Get the liberal arts core courses out of the way at a state school or community college to keep costs down. Be sure to take them at a school that has a semester system instead of quarter system bc transferring courses from a quarter system to a semester system is a ***** if you decide to go to another school. Take a few courses in disciplines you think might interest you that could be used for elective credit. Maybe you will discover your true career interest.

    7. Did a college degree significantly affect the amount of money you bring home? (I know the answer is typically yes but a before and after would be cool).

    Yes in the sense that the degree(s) were usually needed to meet minimum requirements. Skill-wise, I could have learned what I do outside of college.


    8. Do you regret going or not going to college?

    So glad I wnet back at age 29

    9. If they donít have to take out loans - should everyone go to college?

    Knowledge is free. The Internet is an amazing resource. Degrees are not free.

    If you can get an entry level job with "knowledge" but no degree with a company that opens doors to successful employees -- do it. 20 years ago I knew many people that got jobs as Web designers without a degree, but they knew HTML bc they learned it themselves. Now they make 60k to 90k. I opened additional doors for myself by learning about accessibility guidelines for online media on my own. My expertise puts an extra 10k+ in my pocket each year.
    Last edited by Dugmet; 03-02-2018 at 01:45 PM.
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  3. #3
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    I think speaking in absolutes about this stuff isn't really worth it. Everyone's different. Degrees are different. Things you can do without going to college are different. All we have are our experiences.


    For me, I went to a private out of state college because of a few things. It was in a city that wasn't terribly far away from where I grew up but was far enough. The city size was right, and I really liked the city and the campus. The school had a good program for what I wanted to do at the time. I enjoyed my time at college tremendously and couldn't imagine not going to college. It was a lot of hard work but a tremendous amount of fun too.

    In hindsight none of those attractive things mattered. If I could do it again I'd do it entirely differently, even though I don't regret it. I would have gone to a SUNY school so I wouldn't be in debt right now. I bailed on my major later than I should've. I put off going to grad school because I enjoyed my research job and didn't want to go back to school, even though my job paid like ****. I recently got a better job that's still reliant on my science background but isn't lab-work. I enjoy it. I'm happy. I look at my college friends in business and IT who worked 1/10th as hard as I did in college and are all making more money. Oh well. But my job necessitates my degree and while I'm sure there's a million other things I'd be OK with doing, I'm OK with doing this.

    Going to an out-of-state private college, even with great scholarships, was the only thing I regret. Even so, I wouldn't trade those 4 years for anything.

    Was my degree worth it? Yes and no. I could be making more money right now without it, but I wouldn't be able to do the things I did do without it either. I'm happy, but perhaps I could be happier. I've almost paid off my loans but being in debt sucks.


    To the last point: if college was free I'd 100% say everyone in the world should do it. What's to lose?
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by ManRam View Post
    I think speaking in absolutes about this stuff isn't really worth it. Everyone's different. Degrees are different. Things you can do without going to college are different. All we have are our experiences.


    For me, I went to a private out of state college because of a few things. It was in a city that wasn't terribly far away from where I grew up but was far enough. The city size was right, and I really liked the city and the campus. The school had a good program for what I wanted to do at the time. I enjoyed my time at college tremendously and couldn't imagine not going to college. It was a lot of hard work but a tremendous amount of fun too.

    In hindsight none of those attractive things mattered. If I could do it again I'd do it entirely differently, even though I don't regret it. I would have gone to a SUNY school so I wouldn't be in debt right now. I bailed on my major later than I should've. I put off going to grad school because I enjoyed my research job and didn't want to go back to school, even though my job paid like ****. I recently got a better job that's still reliant on my science background but isn't lab-work. I enjoy it. I'm happy. I look at my college friends in business and IT who worked 1/10th as hard as I did in college and are all making more money. Oh well. But my job necessitates my degree and while I'm sure there's a million other things I'd be OK with doing, I'm OK with doing this.

    Going to an out-of-state private college, even with great scholarships, was the only thing I regret. Even so, I wouldn't trade those 4 years for anything.

    Was my degree worth it? Yes and no. I could be making more money right now without it, but I wouldn't be able to do the things I did do without it either. I'm happy, but perhaps I could be happier. I've almost paid off my loans but being in debt sucks.


    To the last point: if college was free I'd 100% say everyone in the world should do it. What's to lose?
    nothing is free.

    If you want the ultimate, you've got to be willing to pay the ultimate price. It's not tragic to die doing what you love.

  5. #5
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    quit being a baby and figure it out on your own

  6. #6
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    The only advice I want to stress based on my college experience is this:

    If you decide to go to college of any sort, make sure the school you go to a regionally accredited school of some sort (state colleges, state tech school, etc). I went to private "for profit" tech college and it has really handicapped me from moving on to getting a bachelors degree. None of my credits transfer for me to try and get a 4 year degree, and the college I went to sold 3 years after I graduated and closed down... trying to get any sort of records is a nightmare.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zmaster52 View Post
    1. Should everyone go to college?
    Absolutely not!

    2. What should people do instead of college?
    Work odd jobs, travel, work odd jobs, grow up, work odd jobs, consider trade schools, work odd jobs.

    Best way to avoid debt, grow up, and become adverse in a variety of ways is to experience a variety of fields and learn what you like, what you are good at, and what you want to do.

    I worked in banking, live on the radio, a pharmacy, a grocery store, sold insurance, a record store (don't think these really exist anymore), Best Buy, a tanning salon, a restaurant, two It companies, and helped another landlord before I started figuring out what I wanted to do and what I was good at doing.

    I wasn't an expert at anything, but I got a good grasp of what I wanted to do. You can get your 10K hours when you are actually in your field.

    You can also do this while in college. Work 20 hours per week somewhere, and create a good work reference so when you are applying for a real world job after 4 years in school, the potential employer has someone to call about your work performances.

    3. Careers that donít require a college degree?
    I own a few businesses, I don't have a degree.

    It really depends on what you are going for. Which blows my mind that any 18 year old could possibly know yet. I was probably 27 before I realized what I wanted to do?

    4. College or trade school?
    I don't think you can recommend one over the other. I feel like too many people probably ignore trade schools before actually exploring what all is out there, and for a fraction of the cost and time.

    5. If you did go to college, did you know what you wanted to do when you entered or did you figure it out along the way?
    I went to two years of a 4 year university. I felt relieved when I dropped out, and college was paid for by Bank of America, who I was working for at the time. It was just completely useless for me and a total burden.

    It was another 5-7 years before I actually found my footing though.

    5a. If you knew, how and when did you know? If you figured it out along the way, how/when?
    Personally. I helped another landlord with some of his properties as a favor for an employer, and found out that was exactly what I wanted to do when I did it.

    Then that snow-balled into my other interests.

    6. What should one do if theyíre enrolled in college but donít have a set career plan?
    Delay it? Or take gen ed classes? Surely the school has a 'I dunno what I want to do yet' path?

    I just wouldn't want to take on a bunch of debt to learn the same stuff you learned in high school for two years to get into the upper level classes that are more specific.

    7. Did a college degree significantly affect the amount of money you bring home? (I know the answer is typically yes but a before and after would be cool)
    Statistically, it's a massive difference in the world. But you have to take that with some caveats.
    Doctors and lawyers are high earners. You can't possibly do one of those jobs without having a degree.

    Also, there are a lot of high school drop outs out there that will never make much. They are poorly educated, not professional, and don't have basic job skills any way.

    If you remove the untrainable, difficult to hire, unprofessional drop outs, and the extremely high degree earners out there....how much of a financial difference is there really?

    Just as an example.....I know a lot of people that have 4 year degrees, and are now realtors. Not a knock on realtors, but you don't need a degree to do that job. And there are plenty of realtors making good money.

    8. Do you regret going or not going to college?
    I am happy I did some college, and left when I did. I'm 34 now, went from ages 18-20.

    9. If they donít have to take out loans - should everyone go to college?
    I mean, if you have someone who is willing to pay for it, or a scholarship, and there are no strings attached....then the social side of college alone is worth experiencing. I got to enjoy that because my 4 year university was in the same small town my high school was in. So I didn't miss out. But there are a lot of social benefits to going to college. Plus, girls prefer a man with a plan (by a long shot) and that helps the dating life. Sitting in your moms basement smoking weed and wandering through life tends to create relationship limits (with girls and friends).

    I see college as a massive social benefit, and a great benefit if you have a career plan. If you don't know what you want to do, and are competent and know how to succeed without it, it's not a bad idea to avoid it or take some time off.
















    The mere fact that you are asking these types of questions is huge. You aren't being a lemming or just following the worlds orders. Ask questions, find advice that makes sense, take action on counsel that makes sense, follow your gut from there. And when you do find your path, create a plan.
    Last edited by Jeffy25; 03-02-2018 at 06:36 PM.

  8. #8
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    1. Should everyone go to college? - No. Some people just aren't cut out for it and there's nothing wrong with it, so long as you can do what makes you happy without it. If what you want out of life can be had without a degree, there shouldn't be pressure.

    That said, it was one of the best experiences of my life. (1) I learned to survive outside away from home (2) The freedom in class selection allowed me to learn tons of things that I still rely on today (38 years old now) (3) the parties, friends, and fun alone made it worthwhile.

    2. What should people do instead of college? - Kind of depends on what you want to do in life. Find the thing you're passionate about and jump in hard. If you don't know what that thing is (like I didn't), find a job and no matter what it is, do it well, be reliable and be the best because you never ever ever know what connections you'll make and where you'll end up. After college I walked into a staff agency in NY and asked them to send me somewhere. Got a mailroom job at a law firm....16 years later I'm a high level exec in California, all through the various contacts and random exposure I had. You just never know.

    3. Careers that donít require a college degree? - I mean, any career can be made better with an education about the field behind it. Not sure the question here.

    4. College or trade school? - Depends on your field. Having the right attitude and right connections matters more by the time you're 3+ years outside of school.

    5. If you did go to college, did you know what you wanted to do when you entered or did you figure it out along the way? - I thought I knew. And I majored in that field starting in my junior year. By my last semester I realized I wanted nothing to do with it and fell back on my business minor to get a job post-college. Ultimately, getting in the door at a base level and working your *** off, making friends and allies is what you need to do. My generation still carried that idea from our babyboomer parents and WWII grandparents. These days, there's a shift in the younger kids I've worked with. I work with kids who expect to be COO of a start-up by the time they're 28, so there's a lack of patience to do the grunt work to get to where they want to go.

    5a. If you knew, how and when did you know? If you figured it out along the way, how/when?

    6. What should one do if theyíre enrolled in college but donít have a set career plan? - Unless you're looking to be in the arts or sciences, I'd say minor in business or education and you'll always have that to fall back on. Once you're out of school, just apply to every entry level position and see what you come across. The line of work I'm in, I didn't even know existed when I got out of college.

    7. Did a college degree significantly affect the amount of money you bring home? (I know the answer is typically yes but a before and after would be cool)
    I don't think I would have been accepted by my employers without the degree. People should understand that (and I only apply this to the general business/office world) the degree doesn't matter because you have a specialized education in a certain topic or that you went to a good school or got a good GPA; it's just proof that you put the time and effort and responsibility into getting that degree and likely have a base level of education that allows you to communicate well and work hard.

    8. Do you regret going or not going to college? - Don't regret it at all. I do regret not continuing on to graduate school for something. I'd love to have that and know I won't do it at this point in my life.

    9. If they donít have to take out loans - should everyone go to college? Even with loans, I'd say people should go, generally speaking. There are plenty of people who shouldn't go though. My brother has never ever been a classroom guy. He didn't want to go to college. Our parents made him and then he failed out of an expensive school 1 semester into it. He's creative, works with his hands, woodworking, cabinets, etc. He's good at it, earns a living and is generally happy doing it, so there's really no blanket rule for going or not going to college. I ****ing loved it and there's rarely a week that goes by where I don't think back on a certain professor or quirky bit of knowledge I picked up, or just some party or people I met. Plus I met the love of my life there.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ManRam View Post
    I think speaking in absolutes about this stuff isn't really worth it. Everyone's different. Degrees are different. Things you can do without going to college are different. All we have are our experiences.
    100%. Working in LA around celebs and big corporations; it's crazy that you can see 2 colleagues in the same position, making the same money, and one with an ivy league degree and one who quit school to work in a mailroom.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hawkeye15 View Post
    nothing is free.
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    Skool sux

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  11. #11
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    Nah, you don't need to go to school.

    Don't be one of those thots though who want to "find happiness" using their job savings to go on a trip with the expectation they can live with their parents.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawkeye15 View Post
    nothing is free.
    Not with that attitude it isn't!

    I mean, plenty of things are free. And plenty more things should be too!
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  13. #13
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    I'm not gonna answer each question individually, but I think a person should try to figure out what they want to do for a career before making that decision. Then you go or don't go based on the requirements to have that career. Pretty obvious if you want to be a doctor, pharmacist, structural engineer, etc. But if you want to be a bricklayer, don't go to college.

    I did go to college for Business Admin. My buddy went to meet with the counselor so I tagged along, she was very very attractive, so I enrolled (young man thinking only with his penis). I ended up one credit short of graduating and the school went bankrupt so I couldn't go get the last credit. Now, I just lie on the resume and say that I finished (The Business Plan was the missing credit). I don't think it helped me career wise until my most recent promotion, as that was one of my advantages over the competition.

    I don't regret going, but if I were to do it again I would do it differently. I would have gone out of town and for something I'm actually passionate about. And if college is free, everyone should go that can do it, some people just can't do it. Knowledge is something nobody can ever take away from you, gather as much as you can.

  14. #14
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    My series of questions is;

    1. Should everyone go to college?

    No. Do what makes you happy.

    2. What should people do instead of college?

    Take a leap-year and evaluate a number of different fields/industries that you habe some interest in, even if preliminary. Work a skilled trade ( I worked 2 summer in a hard-labor job in college and made a ton of $$ to finance future things).

    3. Careers that donít require a college degree?

    A lot more than you think. You just have to take a longer path in most jobs/fields. I've been in a career transition recently and kind of equate my college degrees to 3-4 years of experience. Really the biggest thing is getting your foot in the door. Want to work in professional sports without a degree? You can. It just takes longer, and you have to be willing to do and prove more than one without a college degree.

    I could explain a lot further, but I'm holding off. Anyone can PM me and we can discuss further.

    4. College or trade school?

    5. If you did go to college, did you know what you wanted to do when you entered or did you figure it out along the way?

    I did. I had no idea at first. I just went to college on a whim having finished HS with a 1.70 GPA and no real direction. Figured college was sink or swim and I excelled. Lots of variables that led to diastrous time in HS

    5a. If you knew, how and when did you know? If you figured it out along the way, how/when?

    6. What should one do if theyíre enrolled in college but donít have a set career plan?

    Diversify experiences and internships. I am on the verge of going into an industry I know nothing about about and would normally require a science degree, while having 4 business degrees. The reason I am in that position is because I wrote an extremely strong cover letter, had a very good phone interview, and am able to communicate why and how my past experiences are relatable to the position.

    Jobs are not degree dependent. I've met with a CEO who said "I don't care if you have a management degree or no degree at all. If someone has a socioogy degree or no degree and can do the business job better, degree doesn't mean ****- I'm hiring the person I believe in"


    7. Did a college degree significantly affect the amount of money you bring home? (I know the answer is typically yes but a before and after would be cool)

    Not sure. Kind of a recent grad. In a transition phase.

    8. Do you regret going or not going to college?


    I'd do the same thing in a heartbeat. But that was because of my weird/special circumstances. I would have done my majors and minors differently.

    9. If they donít have to take out loans - should everyone go to college?

    No. IF everyone goes to college and wants to be come CEO's we won't have a functioning economy. Also, college isn't for everyone no matter how you slice it. If you're happy working a skilled trade (which may very well now)- then ****ing do it. **** everyone else. **** your girlfriends dad who may not like that you don't have a degree. You do you.



    If you have any other insight that I might be neglecting, that would also be appreciated. Iím not enrolled at the moment and I might go back next semester but itís honestly a tricky situation with my family life at the moment but thatís beside the point.


    In a 150 years we all end up in the same place. How we get there is up to us. I will occupy the same amount of space as celebreties, actors, athletes, etc. Might as well be happy getting there.


    Like Donny Trump is doing for America after a brutal 8 years, I am making PSD Great Again One Post at a time, doe!!

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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by ManRam View Post
    I think speaking in absolutes about this stuff isn't really worth it. Everyone's different. Degrees are different. Things you can do without going to college are different. All we have are our experiences.


    For me, I went to a private out of state college because of a few things. It was in a city that wasn't terribly far away from where I grew up but was far enough. The city size was right, and I really liked the city and the campus. The school had a good program for what I wanted to do at the time. I enjoyed my time at college tremendously and couldn't imagine not going to college. It was a lot of hard work but a tremendous amount of fun too.

    In hindsight none of those attractive things mattered. If I could do it again I'd do it entirely differently, even though I don't regret it. I would have gone to a SUNY school so I wouldn't be in debt right now. I bailed on my major later than I should've. I put off going to grad school because I enjoyed my research job and didn't want to go back to school, even though my job paid like ****. I recently got a better job that's still reliant on my science background but isn't lab-work. I enjoy it. I'm happy. I look at my college friends in business and IT who worked 1/10th as hard as I did in college and are all making more money. Oh well. But my job necessitates my degree and while I'm sure there's a million other things I'd be OK with doing, I'm OK with doing this.

    Going to an out-of-state private college, even with great scholarships, was the only thing I regret. Even so, I wouldn't trade those 4 years for anything.

    Was my degree worth it? Yes and no. I could be making more money right now without it, but I wouldn't be able to do the things I did do without it either. I'm happy, but perhaps I could be happier. I've almost paid off my loans but being in debt sucks.


    To the last point: if college was free I'd 100% say everyone in the world should do it. What's to lose?
    To the first sentence, youíre right. Iím not here looking for one absolute way of doing things but different perspectives certainly help. PSD is diverse enough for me to calmly assess other peopleís paths and try to relate. Think of it as me taking multiple bits of information and trying to put it together like a puzzle rather than taking things to heart.

    I go to a CUNY and didnít dorm simply because of the money. I wouldíve loved to have gotten the Ďcollege experienceí but it wasnít feasible for me at the time, even less so now. My issue isnít bailing on a major as it is me not wanting to choose one and regret it which in turn just wastes money and time.

    When you said you could make more money, thatís something Iím a bit nervous about. If you asked me a few years ago, I wouldíve told you that I wanted to be a American history teacher. My thing is, itís so much schooling and money for something that isnít going to pay you as much as the effort you put in. Iím not here thinking that I want a small loan of a million dollars without any work but personally, I want a fine balance between making money and being happy...but doesnít everyone?

    Thanks for your insight!

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