Hi, you seem like a really intelligent guy and I was just wondering what your thoughts on attending college are and if you recommend going. I'm a junior in high school right now and would love some advice. Thanks!
Hey there. First off, don’t make any decisions based on opinions solicited from the internet. That being said, here are my thoughts.
I guess it depends on what you want to do in the future. Obviously if you want to be a doctor or lawyer or something like that then you don’t really have much of a choice. But, if you want to do anything creative, you probably don’t need to. I only did one semester at an art school before dropping out. That was two years ago and since then I’ve had the good fortune to find a great job as a designer and work on projects for companies like Google and Virgin.
However, there are plenty of things I feel like I missed out on by not going to college: a built-in social circle, professors who become mentors and friends, the legitimacy that comes with having a degree, and most importantly, the chance to freely explore my interests in a nurturing environment. But I also avoided thousands and thousands of dollars in debt. I sought out my own mentors and worked my ass off to make valuable connections. You have to be incredibly proactive but you can save a lot of time and money by not going to college if you’re willing to work hard.
If anything, go ahead and apply to college, see where you get in, defer some acceptances for a year, and then go take a gap year after you graduate. That’s what I did and it was one of the better decisions I’ve ever made. It gives you a chance to see what the real world is like if you’re not in school and you also then have some time to explore your interests. You can always go back to school. It’ll be there waiting for you. But don’t just go because you feel obligated. Go because you want to.