Are you going to go to college? |

Are you going to go to college?

It’s senior year and the most-asked question is, “Where are you going to go to college?” People don’t bother asking whether you will be going to college; they just assume you will because that is what society expects of graduates today.

When somebody asks this question, and in response you say, “I’m not going to college,” people look down on you and they see you as a lost teenager.

Society has influenced students to believe that college is the right choice after graduating high school. Society promises that if we attend college, there will be a better future awaiting for us.

Colleges promise to give students a greater education and more knowledge, which is supposed to eventually lead to a promising future.

How can colleges promise this if it doesn’t always come true? Many college graduates are still working in fast-food restaurants or other small jobs.

“College isn’t for everyone,” said Middle Park High School counselor Rachel Memelink. “College provides education that can make you successful in other ways and expose you to different things you didn’t know you were interested in.”

Discussing my future plans with my counselor, Memelink stated that college “doesn’t always take you to where you want to be.”

“If [college] is right for them, students should attend. If a student is doing academically well and shows potential, I encourage it,” said Memelink. “It just depends on what students want.”

John Reynolds, Middle Park High School teacher, advises students to attend college “if they care about their character and growing up, and if they care about learning.” He feels that “college is not for all students.”

“Some students first need technical training in a workplace. When they realize what they want, then they should go to college,” said Reynolds.

There are seniors, such as Sam Kerber and Katie Mattfeld, who know what they want to do when they graduate.

“I want to go to college because I’d like to learn more, find out who I am, and what find out what I’d really enjoy,” said Kerber. “College will provide me with critical thinking skills needed in the 21st century work environment.”

“I want to go to college to further my education for a job that I am interested in later in my future,” said Mattfeld. She feels that college will “teach her what she needs to know to do her job correctly and well.”

2010 graduate Halley Hale decided to take a year off from school and then head to college.

“College will help me in the real world and give me more experience,” said Hale. “I wasn’t ready for college. I didn’t know what I wanted to do, and I didn’t want to waste college.”

“[People] shouldn’t rush into going to college. Take your time and don’t focus on what other people think or say,” said Hale.

Current freshman in college, Jackie Freed, described her experience: “College was a lot harder than I expected. It has taught me to be my own person, and I’m finding out who I am,” she said. “For most people, college is the best time of your life.”

“When choosing a college, don’t pick whatever is convenient. Instead, go with what feels right and where you feel like you’re supposed to be,” she said.

College is an option for graduates. It depends on what a student wants and what that student’s goals are.

Whether students choose college or not, the community should be supportive of their decisions for their future.

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