Students should plan for alternate options


Carrie Sandler, Editor-in-cheif

As the school year draws to a close, many students find themselves looking ahead to the next year. Whether that is freshmen planning to step up for their sophomore year, sophomores preparing for the AP load that junior year entails, juniors beginning to think about college, and seniors preparing to head off for their next chapter. While each student is preparing for something different, they all have one aspect in common: preparing for the future, specifically for the chapter that current seniors are facing right now. When students get to their senior year, they are often focused on finding the answer to the basic question they’ve been hearing their whole year: Where are you going to college? While college is the predominant option of where students choose to go post-high school, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 62.7 percent of high school graduates attended college in 2020. With just under ⅔ of the American high school graduate population attending university, the question that comes up is this: is college the best route for everyone? Or, are there better options outside of the typical university?

For those who choose not to attend college, they have the options of taking a gap year, going into trade school, community college, or entering the workforce right away. And while that may not include a college diploma, it does contain multiple benefits. For example, those taking a gap year have the opportunity to travel abroad before deciding to attend University. Or, those who go into trade school have the chance to learn more about specialization in specific jobs. Perhaps entering the workforce will get an early start into gaining income and avoiding the animosity of college debt, which is also a shared benefit with community college, along with getting general credits out of the way. With the common belief being a negative connotation for not attending college, these factors debunk that belief to prove that four year university is not always the path to success for everyone.

So, as students look ahead to prepare for their future, keep in mind that there are multiple options in order to gain success post-high school, whether that is attending a university or a different option. At the end of the day, there is really no wrong choice in regard to what a student should do post-high school, as the Talon believes that the best choice a student can make for themselves regarding their next chapter in life is to do what will ultimately be best for them and their future.