I want to talk about college. When I was growing up, going to college was a given. It really wasn’t an option. Both of my parents went to college and it was just what you did.
While I didn’t realize it at the time, college was something my parents were set on investing in. And sending 3 kids to school was an insane investment and risk. Were they going to get a return on investment? Fortunately they had the means to be able to send us to school.
You apply to colleges during high school and you pick a school. My oldest sister went to an ivy league school and my other older sister went to college in Arizona.
I applied to a few school and visited my sister in Arizona. She was part of a sorority so needless to say for a 17/18 year old boy, seeing the sorority girls help solidify my choice on where to go.
But of course they had a great business program which was the most important.
I can’t speak for countries outside the US, but in a large part of the US, especially in more affluent areas, going to college is expected. The problem with this is that not everyone belongs in college.
I can’t speak for my sisters but I think college was a great experience for all 3 of us. I ended up going to graduate school to study business…specifically entrepreneurship so for me it was really valuable. I competed in business plan competitions and learned a lot that I was able to apply. I ended up going into business for myself.
However, I enjoyed the structure.
I think that for the kids that struggle in school, whether they simply weren’t prepared or are just not made for it, parents need to back off. Find out what the child is good at and let them focus on that.
Now this doesn’t mean the parents are going to allow them to live at home and bum around. If they are not going to school, they need to do something….find a job and experience taking care of themselves.
I think the hard part for parents is they feel its a reflection of them and they have to be ok with their social circle. For many this would be really hard to do.
I think this is where there is a huge breakdown. Parents are forcing their kids to go to school when they really shouldn’t be in it.