1/3 of high school graduates didn’t go to college last year
With college tuition rising every year and student debt at an all-time high $1.2 trillion, it’s not surprising that students and families have begun to question whether college is actually worth the cost.
Most likely due to high costs, high school graduates are choosing to forgo college in favor of working.
College enrollment hits lowest level in a decade
In fact, the college enrollment rate hit its lowest level in a decade last year, with only 65.9 percent of high school graduates enrolled in a college by the fall after their graduation.
This is down from 66.2 percent in 2012, and much lower than the decade’s peak of 70 percent in 2009.
While it’s true that college may not be for everyone, the decline is troubling because college remains one of the best investments you can make–if you’re smart about where and how you spend your college dollars.
The cost of not going to college
Americans without college degrees make less money and are less likely to be employed than college graduates, studies show. In fact, a recent study from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco found that skipping college can cost $830,000 in lost potential income.
Those with bachelor’s degrees are also much more likely to be satisfied with their jobs and live happier, longer lives than non-college graduates.
College is more affordable than it seems
There are many ways to make college more affordable without going deep into debt. It’s important to be open-minded and persistent when applying to colleges, searching for scholarships, and eliminating unnecessary costs.