Job Hunt Questions: Is Higher Education Really Worth It?

When thinking about the future and the careers (and subsequent salaries) one can get into, uncertainty is probably the one word that best describes the whole stressful, arduous process. No one can truly know what the future holds — but thanks to data, studies, and statistics, we can generally assume what happens to most people.

In the world of job hunting, the data is very clear: the more education you get, the more you get paid. And the differences are staggering, especially when you pursue the right type of degree and occupation.

But it’s not quite as simple as looking at a basic statistic when asking yourself whether or not you should really pursue college. There are other factors — the high cost of higher education is troubling, and additionally, some may find themselves too old to go back to school, seeing it as a risky liability rather than a ticket to a better line of work.

Despite these circumstances, many of your fears can be alleviated with a little research.

Dealing with the Costs of Education

While the cost of getting a Bachelors in Public Administration may seem high, the reality is that many online colleges like CBU Online are offering much lower, and more manageable rates than your average college campus experience.

As per Campus Explorer, the cost of college is high and rising. This, to a lot of young adults with little to nothing to their name and older adults dissatisfied with their life makes the idea of going to college that much more of an impossibility. But, with a profitable career plan, you stand to not only pay off your debts early — it’s all about budgeting and keeping it frugal — you also stand to make much more.

How Much Do You Stand to Earn?

This is the really interesting question, and it’s the one that’ll leave you most interested in attending a quality college and getting yourself that degree you always wanted.

If we look at the data from 2015 regarding the median weekly earnings of non-college graduates and college graduates from the US Bureau of Statistics, hosted on Study.com, we’ll find that the numbers show very clearly the more profitable choice. People with a high school diploma but no higher education earned roughly $751 if they were male, and $578 if they were female.

With an associate’s degree — a course of study lasting about two years — men earned $872 and women earned $661 weekly. With a bachelor’s degree, the numbers went up to $1249 and $965 respectively, and finally, an advanced degree meant pocketing $1630 a week as a man, and $1385 as a woman.

The numbers don’t lie. The difference between a college degree and no college degree over the course of just a few decades lies over a million dollars — and as per New York Fed, despite the Great Recession of 2007–2009, college graduates still had lower unemployment rates than most other workers, and young workers without degrees especially.

Overall, the proof is in the statistics: if you’re young and want a job, college is a much better route than wading through the job market with no qualifications.