College Bound | Teen Ink

College Bound

February 7, 2016
By Anonymous

I see college as an opportunity. People go there to spend four years studying and specializing in what interests them. There are so many options ranging from classes to become a fashion designer to being a doctor. For me, college is the start of a career and the beginning of an independent life. When my parents came over to America, they had to work hard in school and outside of it. They had to continue their education while also learning English and adapt to living in a new country. Their determination, perseverance, and motivation inspired me to work as hard as they did, and always do my best academically.

All my life, the idea of not going to college has never popped into my brain. When I was little, my grandma told me to strive for my very best, so that I could have a career in the medical field like everyone else on my mom’s side of the family. She also told me stories of her life back in Vietnam. She had to work hard and go to a boarding school far away from home in order to get the education needed to get into medical school. I reminisce when I told her that I would become an artist and go to college and spend the entire day doing what I love when I was small. She then told me that I should choose an occupation that serves an enduring need such as being a doctor, because there will always be people who are sick and need help. These small accounts of my grandmother and other experiences inspired my outlook about college.

If someone asked me where I wanted to go to college right now, I would say Georgia Tech for undergrad and then Emory for medical school. There are multiple influences for my reasoning to go to college and where. My dad graduated from The Georgia Institute of Technology with a Masters Degree in Engineering. Ever since I was little, I wanted to go to college there simply because my dad went there. I know I have to go to college, because I need to provide for myself one day, and a college education is essential in getting there.

A decade ago, a simple high school diploma or a GED could secure a person with a steady job and enough for a modest life. In today’s economy, a simple high school diploma does not guarantee anyone a job or career anymore. Going to a four year college, or more, might seem a long time, but it gives a person profits in the long run. First, it assures the student a job right after graduating college. Over a lifetime, college graduates make more money meaning they can provide for their families and themselves a lavish and luxurious life. Graduates are also more prone to play a bigger role in their family, because they don’t need to work as many hours to earn an efficient salary. I enjoy traveling with my grandma to different countries and learning about their culture. My grandma told me that if I wanted to travel like she did, then I would have to work hard and save up my money for retirement and travel during that time if I wanted to. The advantages of going to college are boundless and are different for everyone, yet they are always splendid.

Although going to college does have its perks, it also has its drawbacks. Going to college is very expensive, and costs thousands of dollars for one year. After finishing college, it leaves the graduate in a deep hole of debt, unless the student has received a scholarship, student loans, or derives from a wealthy family. While at college, the student would have to work and make money to spend towards books, groceries, and rent all on top of multiple hour-long lectures. Also, college is not a ‘walk in the park’. Colleges do not accept anyone who applies because it is harder than high school, the failing grade is heightened, and the expectations are greater.

I have reviewed over all the pros and cons of attending college, and still intend on going. For me the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. I have many great role models in my family that have raised me and telling me that college is a mandatory option. I know that I am obligated to go to college, yet what I major in and make a career out of it is up to me. My mom tells me if I wanted to attend SCAD to become an artist, then I could, but it would have to be after I graduated college with a stable career. I hate the idea of going to college two separate times, but because my mom told me that, I have a new outlook on college. It is necessary for me to choose a field of work that will later make me an independent person financially, and what I did after that was up to me. My parents have influenced me greatly about going to college, because of their hard work, I am able to live a privileged life. Later on, I would like to provide the same privileged life for my own family too.

The author's comments:

College may seem scary since no one seems to know what they're doing, but listening to those around you can give you plenty of relief and advice.

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