Why is college education important? has been asked by many high-schoolers and perhaps their parents. With both campus based institutions of higher education and now with new online distance learning institutions, the answer given goes something like this:
"As accredited online colleges know, this often asked question has a simple answer -- the importance of college education is seen in increased job opportunities and income. "
I am not sure that answer -- increased job opportunities and income -- fits our present world as neatly as it use to.
The Importance Of Education And The Twenty Fastest Growing Occupations
Education was a key factor that kept emerging among the twenty fastest growing occupations, according to studies by the Department of Labor.
This importance for obtaining a college education was seen in the fact that a bachelor’s or associate degree is the most significant source of post secondary education or training for the following dozen career categories:
According to the Department of Labor, On-the-job training is the most significant source of occupation education, quite a challenge to accredited online colleges as they attempt to provide online education yet include hand's on training.
I suspected that on-the-job training was important but to discover that it is the most significant source of post secondary education or training for another 5 of the 20 fastest growing occupations prompted me to begin exploring how to make this fact about a college education a part of career change strategy.
When serving as a healthcare professional chaplain, I was in many healthcare sites every week. What I noticed was that many of these healthcare job providers had a revolving door in the following healthcare occupations:
Yet according to the Department of Labor, on-the-job training is the most significant source of post secondary education or training for 13 of the 20 occupations with the largest numerical increases.
Furthermore, 6 of these 20 occupations have an associate or higher educational degree as the most significant source of post secondary education or training.
It is interesting to note that On-the-job training is also the most significant source of post secondary education or training for all 20 of the occupations with the largest numerical decreases according to Department of Labor studies.
Education is important but does it need to be obtained with all that debt? By the time the debt is paid, it is not unusual for 20 years to have passed.
What if instead of incurring debt for college, a person entered the workforce and pursued one of the trades that pays well. What if a 401k retirement account could be opened at a sooner time than having to wait until after a degree is earned.
Compound interest earned on retirement plans started at an earlier age could make a huge difference over a lifetime of work and refute the argument that a college education is needed for earning a better income.
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