Why education is not a waste of time

Image by Moheen Reeyad  CC BY-SA 4.0


If you’re about to spend some time in education, you might be tempted to think that it’s a waste of time and money, especially if you can’t see an immediate payoff in the job market. However, learning is an investment in your future, which will pay off with more opportunities and better-paying jobs down the road. Here are some reasons why education isn’t a waste of time after all.

Education and employment

A survey from Bentley University in 2014 found that 81 percent of employers say a degree from an accredited university is necessary for new college graduates to be hired. A 2009 study found that people with a bachelor’s degree earn $1 million more over their lifetime than those with only high school diplomas. Research also shows that workers who have been to college are better equipped to handle positions requiring analytical thinking and decision-making, as well as critical thinking, problem-solving, and good communication skills. If you’re deciding between going back to school or getting another job, keep these statistics in mind. Not all college degrees are created equal either: try to earn a four-year degree in something that interests you so you can enjoy learning and apply what you learn later on in your career.

Whatever you choose to do, be sure to plan for your career and keep an eye on how it’s changing. Don’t think that just because something was true 10 years ago, it still applies today. Technology has made learning on the go easier than ever, which gives you more opportunities to further your education while working. Whether you take online courses or night classes, your future career will benefit from knowledge in almost any subject area. So instead of giving up on school, work hard and prepare yourself for whatever challenges come your way!

The key to getting ahead in your career isn’t going to be found just in your own field or industry. If you want to excel, you need to make yourself valuable enough that employers will go out of their way to hire you. While your degree and past experience are important, so are other skills like communication, problem-solving, and creativity. Keep studying what interests you, be it an art form or a language, because skills like these can set you apart from other job seekers who don’t know how to do anything but work in front of a computer all day. Your unique talents will help open doors for new opportunities that could never have been possible before.

Not only will continuing your education help you stand out in your career, but it can also keep you on top as times change. For example, there are many jobs that were once done exclusively by people with college degrees (such as teachers) that now require workers who only have a high school diploma. The same is true for many other fields: even if you don’t plan to return to school soon, try to keep yourself up-to-date on new learning opportunities. A lot can change in 10 years—just look at how quickly technology has advanced over just one decade! In an age where computers and smartphones are used for almost everything we do, employers will likely look for people who have experience working with these technologies or know how they work.

The more you can do with your time, including working while you study, earning college credits while in high school, and going to school part-time while still working full-time, the better off you’ll be later on. No matter what path you take or which skills you develop along the way, try to always keep learning. You never know when what you know will be useful for your career or life goals. If nothing else, it might just make for a good dinner conversation with someone who’s hiring!

Education opens career doors

If you are able to complete college or university, you will have more career options than someone who doesn’t. That higher degree may help open doors for you and give you access to a wider variety of interesting jobs. Even if your original degree isn’t something in high demand, it could help qualify you for other careers that are appealing to you. Earning an advanced degree might even be required for some jobs. You can gain experience through internships, co-op programs, part-time jobs, and volunteering – all things that add up to help with your resume.

Education can also make you more marketable to companies. Some jobs require certain degrees, and it will be easier for you to apply for your ideal job if you have that on your resume. You’ll also be able to enter into fields that pay more, are in higher demand, or provide more opportunities for advancement with a degree from an accredited school. Earning an advanced degree could lead to even better job prospects and salary offers in addition to opening up some options that weren’t available without it. Education opens doors at many levels – literally and figuratively – offering many benefits along the way!

Learning how to start a new business from conception to execution. Your career prospects can open up with an advanced degree or specialized certificate. Depending on what you study, getting a higher degree could also make you more marketable for employment. There are many different types of degrees and professional certifications that might be right for you, so consider looking into several fields before making your decision. A large portion of Americans now have at least some college under their belts, so earning your degree or certification shouldn’t be overlooked as something that won’t help you in your career!

You may also have to make a few lifestyle changes if you’re working toward your degree. For example, attending classes full-time can take up many hours during the week. You may need to live in an area with plenty of commuting options or public transportation to get you where you need to go. Scheduling in time for studying and completing homework assignments will likely be part of your weekly routine as well, so getting into that schedule will take some adjusting at first. You might even be tempted to put off going back to school because it requires serious work, but don’t! Education opens doors at many levels – literally and figuratively – offering many benefits along the way!

Education increases income potential

You’ll never find out how much money you can make if you don’t get an education. With very few exceptions, it’s only people with college degrees or equivalent certification who achieve high incomes and wealth. There are certainly still plenty of successful business people with only a high school diploma, but these people are extremely rare. The difference between making $75K and $75M isn’t what school you went to; it’s how much effort you put into your studies and your career after graduation.

It takes longer to get rich without an education: Becoming wealthy usually requires spending years working hard at a job you might not love. A college degree or other certification can help make those years more profitable since they increase your chances of getting into a career that offers higher pay and better hours than most jobs. If your plan is to work for just five years before retiring on your savings, having as much knowledge and skill as possible will be essential to earning as much money as you can during those five years. Even if you don’t intend to retire early, having additional knowledge and skills helps your career trajectory in almost every field.

Having an educated workforce leads to higher economic growth: One of the most famous papers in economics, The Role of Human Capital in Economic Development by Michael Spence and Joseph Stiglitz, found that there’s a close connection between how much workers know and how quickly a country develops. The more knowledge workers have, as measured by things like their level of schooling and their ability to use computers at work, predicts higher GDP growth and more investment in physical capital (factories, buildings, etc.). In other words, having smart citizens makes companies want to invest in those countries economies. More skilled people also enable research breakthroughs that lead to new products and industries – something that all nations benefit from.

It’s expensive to invest in education and there are significant costs when you don’t: Even if you make it through college, there’s another cost – four years of your life. You can never get that time back, no matter how rich you get later. If you’re going to spend so much effort getting an education, it better pay off! The payoff comes in higher lifetime earnings – but even if it doesn’t help your career path, getting educated opens doors and leads to other opportunities. You might learn skills that let you start a business or gain new hobbies that keep you happy for decades to come. In general, having more skills makes life more fun!

How much does college cost?

A four-year degree can cost $100,000 or more. For example, an English major from Cornell will spend $126,000 on tuition and other expenses during his or her senior year alone. But is it worth it? Yes. Despite rising costs, college remains one of our best investments. The average bachelor’s degree holder earns about 80 percent more than someone with only a high school diploma over their lifetime. Graduates also save significantly on taxes because they’re allowed to write off student loan interest and many universities offer financial aid packages that are worth tens of thousands in free money each year. In short: College pays—you just have to know how to get the most out of it financially (and academically).

There are several things you can do to make your tuition more affordable. The most obvious move is to research scholarships and grants, which usually require only a little extra work on your part but save thousands in tuition dollars. Even if you don’t qualify for need-based aid—i.e., financial help based on your income and assets—you can still apply for non-need-based grants that don’t consider how much money you make. If you’re planning to attend college at all, it’s worth taking a few hours to fill out free applications for any scholarships or grants that interest you; even if you don’t win anything, there’s nothing lost from trying! You should also consider financing options like student loans and federal programs like Pell Grants or Perkins Loans.

Federal student loans are an increasingly popular way to pay for college. These loans offer lower interest rates than other options and they’re guaranteed by both your school and the federal government, so you can’t lose. To take advantage of these benefits, though, you have to be extremely careful about choosing a loan option that fits your situation—especially since most federal programs have changed.

It’s important to understand that federal student loans aren’t all created equal. You have three main options: Federal Stafford Loans, Direct Subsidized Loans, and Direct Unsubsidized Loans. You should be wary of choosing loans without understanding which type you’re borrowing—and why. The easiest way to identify which loan you have is by looking at your school financial aid award letter. If it says Direct Loan, that means you took out a direct subsidized or unsubsidized loan; if it says Stafford Loan, you took out an in-school or post-graduation subsidized Stafford loan.


A person who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. – Henry Ford. When we all were in school, even if it was just elementary school, we learned so much. We learned things that have never been used in our everyday lives because they are just too hard to remember. It’s all right to forget what you learn when you grow up, as long as you get it back later on in your life when you need it again. 

You can always look something up and re-learn it. There are many benefits to getting an education, like job opportunities and knowledge about how things work around you and how people interact with each other. If someone wants to be successful in their future, then getting an education is one of their best options. I know there will be some people out there who will disagree with me but I’m sure there will also be others who agree with me too.

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