There’s been a lot of talk in recent years about the rising costs of a college degree. College is expensive, to be sure, but is it worth the money? There are some distinct pros and cons when it comes to seeking a college degree. Let’s take a closer look.
What does a Degree do for You?
If you attend college, you’ll learn valuable skills for certain workplaces. If you have a distinct job path in mind, college can be a big boon. Staying focused, keeping to a set path and knocking out a degree in the field of your interest is a must for some fields.
There are many jobs that literally require a college degree to get started. Those jobs, generally speaking, pay significantly more in the long run than jobs that don’t require higher education. But is college really the right path for everyone?
What is Trade School?
Another option for those looking to get a good career path started is to attend a trade school. This will allow a student to learn a skill like plumbing, electrical work, welding or some similar trade. Work in this field tends to be more physically demanding, and often includes an apprenticeship with a master tradesperson.
Once the apprenticeship is over, however, these careers tend to pay similarly to the mid-level pay of college degree-requiring white-collar work. In general, trade skill work is a bit more physically demanding and pays a flatter amount. You start at higher base pay, but don’t climb much in the way of salary.
Which is Right for You?
It’s a tough decision when you look at where you want your career to get started. Many people who don’t feel cut out for blue-collar work might be hesitant to start at a trade school. On the other hand, college can be prohibitively expensive, and it’s not as likely to land you a job as soon as you graduate as a trade school.
If your family has money to help support you through college, it’s often a better idea to try to go the college route. Your maximum earning potential is simply much higher. If you’re from a family with less money and want a more guaranteed, consistent paycheck from your career, trade school is likely the better option.