If you follow my posts, you know that the higher education industry is a big business. Colleges are not-for-profit, but that doesn’t mean they can’t make one. It simply means they don’t have shareholders to whom they report their profits.
Did you know in Germany, education is free? In the UK, higher education pricing is capped at $12,000, including schools like Oxford and Cambridge.
In the United States, colleges do not have price control, and the prices just keep climbing. College costs, including tuition and extras like textbooks, have been rising faster than the cost of living. The higher education business in the US relies on the uncertainty of the economy and parents’ lack of understanding of the industry to help drive prices.
If you google search “what college is for,” you will find many different articles, videos, and podcasts. I recently listened to the podcast “What Exactly Is College For?” from Freakonomics radio which inspired me to write this article.
Why has this topic become increasingly popular? Why are people searching for this answer?
Many parents are still paying off their student loans while figuring out what’s best for their teens. Companies like Google, Tesla, and Accenture offer apprenticeship programs instead of requiring a degree. And Dell Technologies has started expanding its horizons by finding new hires in community colleges. With all this “chaos,” you may wonder if going to college is even necessary.
That’s not to say that I am anti-college. Most students we work with end up going to college and are thriving. When partnering with teens and their families, we emphasize ensuring their investment in college will pay off.
- Our clients focus on choosing a career that will bring them happiness and success.
- Their families invested in us to help research colleges and find the right fit for their teen at the right price.
Since the higher education industry runs like a business, we should treat it as such. You are buying your teen’s education, plus investing a huge chunk of time to earn their degree. It’s critical to ask, where will you get the most bang for your buck? Even if scholarships supplement your teen’s education, you should ensure the scholarship money will be used wisely.
What questions should you ask to ensure you and your teen are getting the best return on investment from college? How will you define success? Here are some points to consider:
- Is my teen clear on their career path, and does the college provide the education needed?
- What are the internship opportunities with that college?
- What companies hire from that college in my teen’s career field of interest?
- Does the college have a learning environment that will help my teen thrive?
If you approach the college search with these questions in mind, you will make better decisions about your teen’s future and get a better return on investment. As I mentioned, the higher education industry relies on chaos and parents not having the skills and knowledge to figure it all out.
Let us help take the chaos out of your life; schedule a complimentary College Assessment Plan Call. We will take the confusion away and provide easy action steps for your family.