The 10 Most Common Excuses for NOT Going to College
So you think that college isn't for you? Well, you're wrong! You don't have to be "lucky" or have lots of money to go to college. You don't have to have straight "A's" in high school or know already what you want to do with the rest of your life. You do have to really want to go to college - and be ready to work hard once you get there. Unfortunately, too many students make up excuses for why they can't go to college. If you're one of those students, here's a list of the 10 most common excuses - and why they're all wrong. Please share this with others.
EXCUSE #1: Nobody in my family has ever gone to college before. Why not be the first? It's true that being the first to do anything can be difficult and maybe even a little frightening, but being the first in your family to receive a college education should give you a sense of pride. Not going to college is the kind of family "tradition" you should break.
EXCUSE #2: My grades are not good enough for college. How do you know they're not unless you apply? Even if you haven't obtained all good grades in school, you can still be admitted to a good college that will be right for you. Colleges look at more than just grades and test scores. They look at such things as letters from teachers and other adults; extracurricular activities; jobs you might have had; special talents in art, music, and sports; and interviews. When deciding who gets in, colleges examine the whole person, not just one small part.
EXCUSE #3: I can't afford it. There's a lot of financial aid available to help you pay for college. This year alone there are about $26 BILLION waiting for students who need money for college. If you apply for aid, and you demonstrate that you need it, your chances are as good as anybody else's that you will receive help. There's money available from the federal government, from your state, from the colleges you apply to, and from thousands of grant, scholarship, and work-study programs. But you won't see any of it if you don't check it out.
EXCUSE #4: I don't know how to apply to college, or where I want to go. You're not alone. You can start by looking at college catalogs in your high school or local library, and you can talk to your high school counselor, favorite teacher, or someone you know who's gone to college. There's a lot of good advice available, but you have to ask for it. With more than 3,000 colleges to choose from, there's bound to be one that's right for you.
EXCUSE #5: I think college may be too difficult for me. Not likely, if you're willing to work hard. Thousands of students graduate from college every year, and chances are many of them were afraid college would be too difficult for them - but they made it in spite of their fears. College is a big change from high school. The competition will be greater and the homework assignments will be longer and tougher. And it isn't always easy to adjust to strange surrounding and make new friends. But once you get involved with your work, you'll find that many of your classmates feel as you do. Who doesn't worry sometimes that they might not make it? And even if you find that you're not doing well in certain subjects, you can still do something about it. Tutoring is available from professors or fellow students, and counseling for personal problems is available on campus too.
EXCUSE #6: I'm not sure that I'll "fit in" in college. Just about any college you might attend will have students from all kinds of backgrounds, so you are sure to find other people whom you can relate to. If you're a minority student, for example, find about student clubs sponsored by African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, Native Americans, Asians, or other groups. Such clubs can help give you a sense of community away from home. Regardless of your ethnic background, you should remember that one of the good things about college is getting to know all kinds of people. It will be interesting to learn about different life-styles and cultures, and it will help prepare you for the world you will face after graduation.
EXCUSE #7: I don't even know what I want to major in or do with my life. The great majority of college freshmen don't have a clue about these things either. Giving you choices is what college is all about. You can take courses in different fields and see what you like and what you're good at. You may be surprised to find a subject or a career field that you never would have thought of before. The biggest mistake you can make is to think that any decision you make is cast in concrete and that you can never change your major - or your life.
EXCUSE #8: There's no way I can go to college full-time. So go part-time. Most colleges offer programs you can attend in the evening or on weekends. Some colleges even give classes where you work or in neighborhood churches and community centers. You can also study many subjects through correspondence courses in home-study programs, and a number of states have external degree programs that let you work for a degree without - believe it or not - any classroom attendance! Ask your counselor about these possibilities.
EXCUSE #9: I'm too old to go to college. Nonsense! You're never too old to learn. Even if you've been out of high school for a while, you can still go to college. Almost half of all full-time and part-time students in the country are adults older than 25 years of age. If they can do it, so can you!
EXCUSE #10: I just want to get a good job and make lots of money. College will help you with that and more. Studies have shown that a college graduate will earn several hundred thousand dollars more during the course of his or her working life than someone who has only a high school diploma. Of course, money isn't everything, but most challenging and interesting jobs with good futures require a college education. A college degree will also give you a greater variety of job choices. There's something else that college will give you: a sense of personal satisfaction, confidence, and self-respect. These are not easy to measure, but they are very important in helping you become the kind of person you want to be. There are probably many other reasons you can think of for not going to college. But why sit arouind making up excuses when you can use that time and energy to do something that will benefit you the rest of your life? Decide now that you want to go to college and then start working at it. This is the bottom line: If you are willing to give it a shot, college can be for you too.