Real Talk: Was Going to College Worth It?

Coming from a very traditional, conservative Russian family, not going to college meant you were a failure, a loser, never to succeed in life. People looked down upon you. I grew up with that belief, and my semi-competitive private high school environment definitely didn’t challenge me to think any different. However, now that I’m in my senior year and my last semester of college, I’ve realized how wrong all these people are in saying that “college is super important and without it, you won’t get a job.”

Now, before I continue, I want to say this: I’m speaking from personal experience only, and I’m sure there are colleges that have literally given students their dream jobs; but for me, my experience was a bit different. Here are some points I’ve come to realize about a college degree.

First, above all, I am very grateful for my attendance at BU. I learned how to be so much more independent than had I not gone to college and lived in a dorm. I learned to look at other people's advantages and learn from them rather than always be in a competition. 

blue college hat room Anna Thetard / Her Campus

But…college is not high school, in the sense that your college professors don’t really care about you. A lot of times I could almost feel the professor’s careless attitude towards the students. Their TA was their number one, and if you didn’t sit in the front of the class every day, they didn’t remember your name. In high school, I felt like there was something more personal, like the teachers there actually wanted to guide and help you. 

Also, the food is terrible. So many times, I’ve eaten undercooked rice, chicken that I swear to god tasted like rubber, and green beans that were dripping with oil (and not healthy organic olive oil, let me just say) at our dining halls. Food is so important, especially when students are stressed and busy; however, many times I had to either go hungry or overeat unhealthy food simply due to the complete absence of healthy options. 

A girl with white nail polish holding scrabble letters spelling the word SENIOR Photo by Jen Theodore on Unsplash

Overall, do I regret my decision to attend a prestigious university? Absolutely not. I have grown to be more confident in myself, and I have learned the powers of time management and budgeting. But to be a hundred percent honest, if I myself was paying for the tuition with no outside help (my parents) whatsoever, I would definitely think twice about it. There are professions where a diploma is a must-have, like doctors and lawyers. For my profession, communications, a diploma is not necessary.

My final advice to anyone thinking about college is this: know what you want and stand by it. It might be simple, but had my family given me an option of, let’s say, a gap year, I definitely would’ve taken it. It’s alright to not go to college and spend that money on traveling instead, it’s alright to be in your third year of college and decide that this isn’t for you, and it’s alright to go to college to get your masters, PHD, and MBA. Just know that college doesn’t automatically guarantee you a good job. 

As we take this time to reflect, remember to stay safe everyone!

 

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