Life After High School: There Are More Options Then Just College

I hear a lot of people telling their children that they have to go to college to be successful. And that statement is completely FALSE. Depending on your career choice and what you want to do with your life you do not technically have to go to college. College honestly isn’t for everybody, and if you go for all the wrong reasons you will not succeed. If you go to college just because your parents are telling you to go, you will not succeed. If you are going because they said they will continue to financially support you, you will not succeed. College is a lot of hard work and commitment. It is not the same as high school, and most high schools now days do not prepare you for college in no shape or form.

I went to a vocational school in Baltimore, Maryland called Carver Vocational-Technical High School. I graduated in 2014 with my high school diploma and 90-hour child care certification. Since Carver was a trade school it was to their belief that most of us wouldn’t be going to college, but continuing in our trade of choice. The only interactions and discussion we had that involved college was when it was time for applications and talks of scholarships and grants.

Now don’t get me wrong my college bound counselor was very helpful when it came to financial aid. He is he reason that my private liberal arts education was fully paid 4 years in the row. I will graduate college debt free with nothing to pay back to the government. But anything else that involved college life was never discussed. We never talked about professors, the atmosphere, the classroom environment, the syllabus, class schedules…..anything.

So what does a person do when they aren’t prepared???? They have to really want to be college students; they have to have a desire to want to be involved in that type of commitment. I am a First Generation College Student. For those of you who don’t know what that is, it means that I am the first out of my parents, grandparents, great-grandparents and soooooo on and soooo on to get a Bachelors Degree. I have nobody to ask about how college went, and get advice about how to carry myself. I had to figure out this journey on my own.

So, when people tell their children that they have to go to college to be successful, when there are plenty of other options; this makes me angry. You can take whatever path you want to take when it comes to your college education. If you don’t want to go to college; you don’t have to. Unless you want to be a doctor or lawyer or something……Now you know that requires schooling.

You can go into the military, trade/ vocational school, job-corp, or even get a job until you figure it out. Do not rush your process or look at another person’s life to examine what you want to do with your life. Do what you want to do.

If you want to go to college go because you want to; not because somebody else wants you to. If you want to go to the military; go because you want to. If you want to go to job corp or trade/vocational school go because you want to. Follow your own path in life and accomplish your dreams….your way.