The Importance of a College Education
You make a living by what you get. You make a life by what you give” (Winston Churchill, circa 1940) Learning the importance of getting a good college education did not come to me until I was 31 years old. Many of my friends, and colleagues and I were of the same age, however they were far beyond me in educational levels. It was for this reason, and other reasons, including better society levels, and the ability to achieve my career goals, that I decided to go back to college. With rare exceptions, all Americans will need to participate in some sort of postsecondary, occupational skill-development program if they are to be productive enough in the new knowledge-based economy to earn for themselves and their families a decent standard of living. And understanding this led me to my decision to return to school.
Upon graduation from high school in 1987, and I immediately began working. My first job was was with the United States Navy where I stayed for almost 7 years. I attended Central Texas College as well during this time. Unfortunately, my heart and mind were not in my studies. I was more or less going to please others and because I thought it was the right thing to do. After three years of playing around and getting mediocre grades I decided to just concentrate on the Navy and my new family. Work within the Navy was fine. It taught me how to use the most important computer applications and learn great interpersonal and business relation skills.
It was because of this 40 hour a week schedule that I completely cut off school for 5 years. I did not realize the impact this would have on my future. My mind told me I did not need a degree as long as I had a full time job with a good salary. But I soon realized that this blue collar work was not something I wanted to remain in for the rest of my life. While many of my peers were progressing, getting promotions and higher salaries, I remained the ever so needed administrative assistant in the Navy and now in the civilian world, preparing for my release from the Navy. I have to admit, I am great at what I do, or so I have been told on many occasions. However, the majority of what I do is not challenging enough to hold my interest for a long period of time. I have an intelligent mind and I intend to put it to full use. I want the doors of opportunity to come my way, and getting a proper college education will be the key. I have an even a greater chance to succeed because I will have work experience behind me as well my degree. Still and all, if I could do it again, I would have immediately attended college right after my high school graduation. If I had taken the correct course I would have already graduated and would probably be in a higher paying position. I was warned time and time again to go to school, because work would always be there. A hard head makes a soft behind.
Personal growth through college education is an amazing thing, that is another reason I decided to go back is because I saw my beautiful 65 year-old mother walk the stage and proudly receive her Bachelors Degree in Nursing in the summer of 1998. She raised her children, and retired from 20 years of service at North Austin Medical Center as a Licensed Vocational Nurse and still decided to go back and get a degree. My mother has my utmost respect for her dedication for higher education. Even after all these years she couldve just relaxed and enjoyed the fruits of her labor, instead she chose to attend college again.
After weighing all of my options and seeing all the signs I knew it was time to get back in the game. I mean, today’s society’s level of norm based on an individuals qualifications has three fold in the past 30 years, whereas more than 55% more high school seniors attend college than in 1968. (http//:bostonu.edu) Once where an individual could be successful and needed no college education, now needs to attend some form of continuing education institution. As a result, I am now attending the University of Phoenix.
I now attend to college to please myself, and to create better opportunities for me and my future generation. It took a while for me to fully understand and appreciate what a college education could do. I admonish everyone, young or old to pursue their degree if they have not already done so. It is never too late…for education.
The Importance of a College Education