Education has always been important and its importance will only grow over time. We now live in times where there is growing emphasis on knowledge economy and the geographical barriers have been declining, resulting in more mobile human and financial resources. Thus, any job that requires basic skills and can be outsourced, will be outsourced to places with low labor costs. Education provides us with specialized skills that are in short supply and which are difficult to replicate, at least, under the current state of technology. Critics who claim college is a waste of time and money often have a narrow concept of the overall value of college education. We don’t go to college to merely get a degree but also learn other skills that are valuable in the real world such as communication, cross-cultural skills, and teamwork skills. We also go to college because having a college degree provides employees with important clues about our personal characteristics. It tells employers we have strong work ethics, can adapt to change, can survive in a fast-paced environment, and have strong time management and organizational skills. College is where the best companies go to hire talent, thus, it pays to be where you are more likely to interact with your dream companies.
Formal education in classrooms is just one type of learning we engage in at college. We learn as much outside classrooms as we do in classrooms if not more. We interact with students from diverse cultural, social, and economic backgrounds and the insights gained from these interactions provide us with an edge in the real world. It not only opens more career opportunities for us but also enables us to do our job better. We also develop valuable personal relationships with fellow students as well as industry leaders and professionals who come on campus. It is clear the real value of college is much more than the academic degrees it bestows upon its graduates.
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