Does Going to College Really Pay Off?

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March 9th, 2016 by schoolbound

Going to college is expensive, a lot of work, and a life-changing experience.  If you are like many people, you probably wonder if it is even worth it.  It is a very large commitment that is really scary.  On the other hand, the uncertainty of whether you can get a job that pays the bills without a college degree is pretty scary, too.

Going back to school doesn’t have to be scary, though.  It’s all in how you look at it.  You’ll have the opportunity to learn new skills, meet new people, and perhaps break free of the daily grind of just surviving paycheck to paycheck.  Having hopes and dreams is great, but achieving them is amazing!

In addition to the personal satisfaction and internal rewards that come from earning a college degree, there are also financial gains and employment stability.  Several reports by the federal government have shown that having a degree not only affects how much you make currently, it also affects how much you will make throughout your life.  Graduating from college can also affect unemployment rates.

People with an associate degree:

  • On average, earn $50,000/year or 21 percent more than those with just a high school diploma.
  • Over a lifetime earn about $325,000 more than high school graduates.
  • Have a 4.5 percent unemployment rate, compared to 6 percent for people with high school diplomas.

People with a bachelor’s degree:

  • On average earn about $64,000/year
  • Over a lifetime earn about a million dollars more a year than those with just a high school diploma
  • Have a 3.5 percent unemployment rate