NEW YORK (MainStreet) — College costs more than ever and job prospects in your field are likely low. Unless you plan to major in a hard science, mathematics or engineering, its necessary to evaluate whether or not college is a sound investment. But you can save thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars simply by deferring college for a few years. What's more, you'll be more likely to spend the money you're spending on college on a major you'll end up using for gainful employment.
Breaking the Automatic College Cycle
"These days there's the expectation that everyone has to go to college right out of high school," says Chris Hogan, a personal finance expert and part of the Dave Ramsey Speaker Group. "People need to start thinking about whether or not college brings them closer to their goals." He notes that there are options beyond just going to college like trade school, attending college part time, apprenticing or just working for a few years until you have a better idea of what you want to do with your life.
Joe Kitterman, CEO of 180 Skills, agrees. "I went to IU in the '70s at the age of 18 and had no idea what I wanted to do," Kitterman says. "I had fun, but I flunked out twice." Kitterman says that when he made that mistake a credit hour cost $15. Of course, tuition has risen more than 1,000% across the nation in the ensuing decades.
"Now that would be a fatal decision you'll probably never make, right?" he said. "You'll walk away with nothing to show for it but a ton of debt."