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partyrock's avatar

Do you regret not going to college? If you have, was it a waste or time for you, or is it worth it?

Asked by partyrock (3863 points ) December 14th, 2011

For all the people who have yet to go, or haven’t gone, do you regret not going to college? If you have, was it the best choice? I haven’t gone to school yet but I’m thinking of it. I don’t really know what I would major in. I know there are statistics that if you have college degrees you earn more money. Is it worth it?

My dad never graduated from college but he is really well off since he worked hard. I’m deciding if I should go or not. I also don’t like the idea of debt or having money that I owe someone.

Life is short and I feel 4 or 6 years in school is a long dedication but then again I know I have to be smart with my career and life.

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82 Answers

AnonymousWoman's avatar

I haven’t gone to college (other than just to visit) and I do regret it. I feel like it makes me a loser in some way.

partyrock's avatar

@AnonymousGirl – That’s the way that I feel sometimes… How old are you if you don’t mind me asking?

I don’t want to feel like a loser, but with society’s emphasis on schooling and college degrees, it makes me feel like I’m one sometimes. I think everyone leads different paths in life.

I just turned 22 and most people are already graduating at this time :(

AnonymousWoman's avatar

I am 21 and I’ll be turning 22 in a few months. I definitely know what you mean.

partyrock's avatar

@AnonymousGirl – We’re almost the same age :) or close to it at least! I’m really scared to be in debt and owe a lot of money. I don’t want to feel that burden. That is another reason why I haven’t gone to a 4 year university. I’m contemplating on doing 2 years at a community college then transferring to a 4 year school.

I’m scared it will be a waste of time too, have you ever thought this? Not sure if I’m the only one, I’m probably not.

Seaofclouds's avatar

I went to college and definitely feel that it was one of the best decisions I’ve made. I started out at a local community college and received my Associates Degree in Nursing. Then I went into a RN-BSN program at a local university and received my Bachelors Degree in Nursing.

Dog's avatar

Debt is not an issue- learning all you can in life surpasses it by far.

I do not regret my education at all. I am still paying student loans.
But learning is the most valuable thing. The more you learn in life the more you can contribute back.

AnonymousWoman's avatar

@partyrock You could be like my third oldest brother who saved up before he went to school. He doesn’t have any debts as far as I know. He even had (and I believe still has) enough $$ left over for fun stuff for himself. :)

Yes, I’ve feared it being a waste of time. Then again, I also feel that some postsecondary education is better than none at all.

I don’t feel like my grades are good enough, so I’m afraid to apply. My own father criticizes this and says I don’t give other people a chance to be nice because I decide what they’ll do before I even try. Part of me knows he’s right, but it’s hard. I had felt for so long that people always mean what they say, but the older I get, the more I realize that there are many exceptions to the rules.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

I never went to college. We are still paying for my husband’s college education. Maybe if we ever get out of that hole I’ll go, too. Probably not.

Response moderated (Writing Standards)
partyrock's avatar

I’ve begun to think about my future and the best roads I could take. To having stability. College degrees earn more money.

partyrock's avatar

@Seaofclouds – Congratulations :) My mom is a nurse !

SavoirFaire's avatar

I went to college, and I loved it. I loved it so much I went back for graduate school. It is not my opinion that everyone should get a bachelor’s degree, but I think some college is good for everyone (even if it’s at a vocational school or community college). A couple of years at a community college can typically be done with little to no debt.

The pragmatic question, of course, is “what do you want to do with your life?” If you need to go to college for that, then it would be a waste not to go. Yes, you may come out with debt, but you can apply for scholarships if that’s really a problem. Remember, also, that the increased earnings most college graduates enjoy help pay off the debt—whereas it is harder nowadays to earn a lot of money simply by working hard. Sad, but true.

Ultimately, however, education is simply one of the goods of life. Pragmatic considerations aside, it satisfies the primal curiosity that most humans share. College is by no means the only way to get educated, but it is a good way to get information in a structured way so as to prepare you to learn on your own in the future. Don’t miss out on the opportunity simply because it brings along a few minor inconveniences. If you really can’t afford to go, so be it. But if you can, I recommend at least some college education.

partyrock's avatar

@AnonymousGirl – Do you know how long he saved up for? A couple years ?

partyrock's avatar

@SavoirFaire – Were you working a job also while going to school?

AnonymousWoman's avatar

@partyrock I’m not really sure, actually. He is done college, though, and he’s not even 30 yet. :)

partyrock's avatar

@SavoirFaire – I kind of know what I want to do with my life, but then again I don’t have a clear set path. I never thought of going to college. In high school all I could think about was being set free and living my life. I have never known what kind of college degree to get.

Financial stability does worry me. I want to do something diplomatic and travel the world. I’m also interested in photojournalism. I know all diplomats have degrees, and the only diplomats I’ve seen are in there 40’s and above.

Dog's avatar

@partyrock There is a huge difference between being smart enough and learning. Learning arms you, it gives you logic to battle. It allows you to mature into the best you can be. It gives you POWER that is respected. It ensures that you will not be a pawn in life.

partyrock's avatar

To be honest with everyone the only set goal I know and have right now is to work and save a lot of money. That’s the only thing I want to do with my life. Save a lot of money then travel the world. And do my photojournalism, help out, humanitarian work. That is about it.

And I’m scared once I get back to America from traveling, I won’t have anything.. to show for..

SavoirFaire's avatar

@partyrock I did work a job while in college, but that’s because I was living with my then-girlfriend (now wife). As for graduate school, it is a job. I get paid to teach classes each semester.

If all you want to do is make money and travel, you might consider going to college and majoring in a language. That would make you conversant in the literature and culture of the places that use that language, as well, which would be helpful for traveling and for diplomatic work. You could also take classes in politics and public policy, specifically those focused on international issues, to boost your diplomacy credentials.

Though if you’re really serious about diplomatic work, you may need a second major.

partyrock's avatar

@Dog I understand what you are saying and totally agree!

JLeslie's avatar

I went to a community college first and then transferred to a university. Going away to college and living on campus was fantastic! I never thought I would love it as much as I did. I regret that I did not take advantage of all the service available at my school to help me decide what to major in, and I regret I did not focus on my studies a little more, and I wish I had taken more variety in my elective courses, but even with all of that, just being on a college campus gave me more focus to find my way and get the degree done.

It definitely helped me in my career to have a college degree. I think I would have had huge regret if I did not have my degree now.

Also, I went to a different part of the US, I went to school in the midwest after having grown up in the northeast. It’s a great way to experience another region of the country without the same stressors involved when one is moving for work.

I absolutely hate the idea of anyone graduating with a huge debt on their back though. My parents paid for my education, so I did not have that worry. I can see going into some debt for school, but really take it seriously, think through the money. Go in state if you have to, or you can also move to a state to establish residency if you want to go to school in another state, but then you wind up delaying school a little.

Dog's avatar

@partyrock I was a single mom at your age. I know what you mean. I wanted to earn enough to make my own way. Trust me- the education will go beyond all that. It will enable all your dreams to come true.

partyrock's avatar

@JLeslie – Do you have a master’s or bachelor’s ?

Aethelflaed's avatar

Debt is just part of life. It’s how we’ve structured our system. I know that it sounds really bad to owe money to someone, but without going into debt, it’s really, really hard to get credit. And without credit, you can’t get a lot of things – home ownership, a new car (often a used car as well), many apartments, contracts with phone companies that aren’t Cricket, etc. And some of those things, like phones, like cars, can really help you earn the money that you need to pay off the debt. So, a certain amount, you really just have to accept, unless you’re starting off life with a giant pile of cash.

Education is often required for non-entry level jobs, and even for many entry-level jobs. So no, you don’t need an education – but for photojournalism, instead of being a cashier? Then yeah, you do.

partyrock's avatar

@Dog – Have you gone to school since then?

SavoirFaire's avatar

Man, this question is crazy popular.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

@partyrock “That’s the only thing I want to do with my life. Save a lot of money then travel the world. And do my photojournalism, help out, humanitarian work.”

I went to PhotoJ school for a year before dropping out. I had already been hired as stringer by multiple newspapers and saw no benefit shooting for class assignment vs shooting for paid assignment with photo credit. I worked as a Newspaper Photojournalist for seven years and then moved to Magazine work. I began pursuing Fashion Photography because it crossed the line between PhotoJ, Art, and Commercial. After 70 published fashion editorials and countless jobs for department store catalogues, I opened my own print shop and advertising agency.

Not one person I know from PhotoJ class is working as a photographer in any way.

I wish I’d not gone to PhotoJ school at all. I wish instead that I’d taken Business Management classes. The Photography was the easy part from love. Running a business is the hard part. But you learn from the school of hard knocks either way.

partyrock's avatar

@Aethelflaed – With photojournalism I really don’t think I need to go to school for that. Am I just being hard headed there? I took up a camera and traveled around California by myself taking shots, and I never went to classes for it. And my pictures turned out pretty good. I can see how I would need to go to school for the technical stuff though. I’m a pretty good artist too and it never went into my mind I would need to go to art school to learn how to paint. I’m already a painter. Same thing with my photojournalism. Maybe I’m being too dreamy. Maybe you can tell me how it really is.

Because no matter how good a person is, the employer will always pick a college graduate over a non college graduate right?

partyrock's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies – And companies like National Geographic definitely only choose photographers with degrees.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

That’s a myth. Photographers are hired from their portfolios. No one wants to see a diploma.

partyrock's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies – I dig that, that is what I’ve always pretty much realized. The love for it is what drove you to be successful right ?

partyrock's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies – Kind of like if someone has natural talent it can’t be taught, but comes from their drive and passion?

partyrock's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies – Do you consider yourself a photojournalist ?

JLeslie's avatar

Also, a girlfriend of mine has a son who has always struggled academIcally. He really wanted to go to college. It has been tough for him. During Freshman year his college had people from each major come back and talk about their careers. This providedan aha moment for her son. He is majoring in some sort of event planning something or other with an emphasis in resorts. Who even knew that degree existed? He grew up going to Disney World all the time, loves being in the park, and he thinks he will be great in this field. If he had not gone to college he never would have found this path.

My husband took an HR course. He never knew anything about HR, or the field of study, but he really loved the class and decided to major in it. he is now a VP of HR.

So many stories like this.

You sound like you know what you like already. You are ahead of the game. Get a degree in your field and you will be much more well rounded and taken more seriously.

partyrock's avatar

@SavoirFaire – That’s cause I really needed advice and opinions!! lol.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

Just shoot and develop your own style. Learn how to operate a camera will full manual control… no automation. Learn about color temperature of light. Shoot shoot shoot shoot shoot and pay attention to your mistakes. Show your photography any chance you get.

Begin to recognize your individual style and promote that more than anything. Refine your technique. You will be hired because of your unique vision… not because you learned how to mimic a photography instructor.

Yes I am a photojournalist at heart. I use that vision to brand my commercial and fine art images.

JLeslie's avatar

@partyrock I think your photos will be the most important thing in your field, not the degree. But, what if you don’t sell your photos right away? A degree you will always have, you have it to fall back on, it can’t hurt. plus you will miss the experience of college, which I think is a great experience.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

Go to school for Art Theory and Art History, and Business. Don’t worry about Photo School. Learn to Art. That will be evident in everything you do from Photography to Writing to Washing the Dishes.

nikipedia's avatar

I asked a sort of similar question recently. I have really mixed feelings about all my education. I am still in school, in effectively 20th grade, and I have taught some college classes as well.

I do not think college is the right decision for everyone. And I think you are very smart to avoid getting into debt. Bachelors degrees simply do not have the same payoff that they once did. Some schools now cost more than $50,000 per year to attend, and private lenders are more than happy to loan you more money than you can possibly pay back at interest rates that will ruin you. It’s not dissimilar to the subprime mortgage catastrophe that already damaged our economy so badly.

Even public education is now out of reach for most people—in the state where I live and teach now, estimated costs are over $30,000 per year. It will take me about 20 years to pay off my 4 years of public education (unless I win the lotto).

I have taught students and been in classes with students who had no business being in college. They were making a very expensive mistake.

But don’t ever for a second think you’re not smart enough. Being successful in college has very little to do with being smart. If you know what you want and are motivated to get it, you’ll do just fine.

Pandora's avatar

It really depends on the day. I never finished and got my college degree. I regretted it at times when I was younger but not anymore. If I had college bills to pay at the time than I would’ve probably had to either not have my kids or work full time and pay someone else to raise them. I wouldn’t have been happy with that. I felt guilty for even getting a part time job when they were older and not being able to leave work right away to pick them up from school or leave them with a sitter when they were not well.
Did I feel I missed something for not going back to school? Sure. But I would’ve missed a lot of good times and memories. Plus with my husband being in the military, I knew a lot of spouses who sometimes had to quit a career and go to a town that didn’t need their skills and they were miserable just working at the corner store because the town didn’t need another social worker, or lawyer, or a special needs teacher or arist or actor because the town was so small or there was no job that fit their skills. Often times the spouse would either give up on their profession to stay with their spouse or give up on the relationship to persue their professional career.
But with todays economy and competition for jobs, college is almost a must have.
I do think some of the college courses that a person has to take today is a waste of money.
When my son went to college he had to take some extra curricular classes that would not help him in any way with his major. Except that he needed to take them to get the credits he needed to get a degree. I just see it as a way to waste parents money on classes to clown around. A college degree would probably only take 3 years vise 4 to 5 if they cut out these stupid classes. Students would be less in debt and can start their careers earlier. I’m not saying the arts should be deleted from colleges but it should be limited to art students. Not make such things mandatory. My daughter went to a tech school. She got her bachelors in 2 years time not 4. Yes it was almost as costly but she didn’t have to add two more years of feeding her and paying for her home. That would’ve added another 30 thousand or so to the final cost.
Go to a local college if you live at home. You’ll regret the added cost later if you go away to a college.

partyrock's avatar

@JLeslie Yes you’re right!

partyrock's avatar

Just a question for everyone, do you or anyone you know have a degree in Political Science ?

incendiary_dan's avatar

I think going to college might have been a bad idea for me. I learned more about anthropology in the few years after college than I did in five years during college. Not that I didn’t have good experiences, too. But in terms of learning and money, I could do without the student loan bills and the degree that doesn’t open all that many job opportunities. Then again, I can sometimes teach in a few subjects, so that’s cool.

partyrock's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies – Do you think it was a waste of time for your fellow classmates who were in the PhotoJ school ?

partyrock's avatar

@nikipedia That is what I am afraid of, making expensive mistakes, especially if I don’t have the drive for it or rather do something else with my life and time.

lillycoyote's avatar

@partyrock How on earth would it be arrogant to think you shouldn’t attend college because you are not smart enough? My dad never even thought about college, then he enlisted in the Navy in WWII and said that he observed the Petty Officers and a couple of his “30 Day Wonder” Captains on the ships he served on and thought: “If these idiots can make it through college, then maybe I should give it a try.” He ended up with a Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry. If you have an opportunity to go to college, certainly don’t turn it down just because you might think you aren’t smart enough because you very well could be, and most likely are and wouldn’t that be a waste?

JLeslie's avatar

If you never go you never know. If you go and decide it isn’t for you, you can quit.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@partyrock I know several people with degrees in political science. A few are now in Washington DC as staffers to Congressmen, and a few went to graduate school.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

“a waste of time for your fellow classmates who were in the PhotoJ school ?”

It’s only a waste of time if you don’t learn anything. Some of them just discovered they weren’t very good photographers… or they weren’t willing to go the extra mile to get the shot. Some found writing to be more to their liking. Some just couldn’t find work in a failing newspaper industry and didn’t have the gumption to be self employed.

All of us learned something from the experience. It’s up to each one of us to make the most of that.

DaphneT's avatar

I went and I don’t regret it. I also don’t work in that field anymore, nor do I make any money at what a I do now. Go if you want to, when you’re ready, for whatever reason you choose and it won’t be a waste.

judochop's avatar

I went to college. I almost finished a second degree as well. In total, 4 colleges. I even paid off the remaining amount on my loans by the age of 32. I am now 36 and deeply in debt and have only once in my life gained employment due to my degree. Now that the economy is headed in to a direct shit storm the best type of employment to have are skilled trades. If I had it to do all over again, I would have learned to weld on ships, or became a master mechanic or electrician. I feel that these three trades will be in high demand as our civilization continues to evolve. Do I want to go back to school, hell no. I think the years spent there and the time spent studying have been an almost total waste of time. I did not gain very many life long friends and I’ve still the struggles that every one else has. It did not offer me a leg up in the competition and it hinders me at times on my resume, making me over qualified for some positions. To bad you can’t get a degree with the Khan Acadamy, college is just a big business, not an asset unless your direction is politics, even then…At best it’s questionable.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I’m a huge fan of going to school despite all of the shortcomings that are also there…I began school in Russia, finished middle school and high school in the U.S. I got my BA and took every opportunity to have a well rounded college experience. I studied abroad, it was amazing. I went on to get a Master’s degree and studied abroad again, even more amazing. I’m in a PhD program now and I teach sociology to college freshmen. I swear, I’d be in school my entire life. I never missed out on ‘being in the streets’ either, I’ve just managed to do it all. I always volunteered and started organizations and did community work. I’ve always interned and did research and I had two children, planning on a third. Life doesn’t have to include college but I do think everyone should try it before saying it isn’t for them. I also think it’s got to do with who you are as an individual, whether you think education is something that’s supposed to be put into you…if you don’t get that you must work hard to become a learned person, it will not be great fun for you. No learning is a waste of time, in my opinion but many people do not take learning seriously and complain far too easily and way too soon.

whitetigress's avatar

I would rather be poor and educated and in debt and happy knowing I tried and am equipped with certain skills and general education, than to be poor uneducated and always wondering what if…(either way I plan to go big or go home and don’t mean its bad not to go to college, it’s just that I’m poor to begin with) Thats my current motivation. Of course I’ve dropped out twice, switched majors 3 times, college is serious business but no one is ever going to take your education away from you but yourself.

SavoirFaire's avatar

Education, n. That which discloses to the wise and disguises from the foolish their lack of understanding.

—Ambrose Bierce

whitetigress's avatar

@SavoirFaire Great quote. You know, the more educated an individual is the more it helps out the society as a whole. We learn things like “the summer isn’t the hottest season because that’s when earth is closest to the sun *actually the opposite” Or we learn that people in the real world, give a damn about spelling and they only take your proposals seriously if you write to them in an error free manner (publishing companies, etc) College comes from the European ideology that learning a little bit from a lot of genres makes for a more equipped and understandable person.

Aethelflaed's avatar

@partyrock A lot of jobs won’t even look at resumes that don’t have a degree. It’s not always that you’ll learn the stuff you need to learn in college, but that you’ve shown that you’re “willing to play the game”, as it were. That you can show up and do what’s asked of you and do it well enough that a college is willing to vouch for you as a person.

And yes, one of my closest friends is finishing her poly-sci degree in a couple months.

Bachelors cost more with less payoff than they used to, yes. But on the other hand, I have found a crazy amount of really crappy, “just trying to pay my rent” jobs that won’t even look at you as a candidate without a bachelors, because that’s how common they are.

Dog's avatar

@partyrock I continue to use my study skills and passion for research daily. It got me a 100% raise at work. Had I not gotten my degree I would never have learned how to properly research or how to comprehend research study results and other documents.

If you “settle” for just making money now- then when will you be able to achieve your inner dreams? Look into youself- the you that as a child you knew you would be. If it is a nurse that is awesome- just realize that often times (as an awesome nurse) you will need to know nearly as much as a doctor. This is fine too but just be sure you do not end up resentful, wishing you had become a doctor or PA.

Right now is the best shot you have at an education. No kids or husband. No job fueled by rent and basic living expenses.

If you have a dream beyond just making a buck then now is the time to go for it.

Bellatrix's avatar

@partyrock I am an academic and I agree with @nikipedia. If going to university (college) will take you where you want to go, then do it. It is a great experience, I agree with everyone who has talked about the experience aspect but you do end up with a debt at the end.

If you have a degree though, research in Australia shows graduates earn 40% more than non-graduates. However, I do think how soon that happens depends on where you end up working. In many fields entry level jobs don’t pay brilliantly and you will have to get some real on-the-job experience before your degree really pays off. Also, in Australia, if you do an apprenticeship in some trades you can earn as much if not more as a university graduate.

So, think about what it is you really want to do and whether you need a degree to get there. There are plenty of mature aged students who go back to university when they have a clear view of the direction they want to take and their attitude is very different too. They are studying because they have a career plan, not because they think they should and it is expected of them.

I loved studying and still do. It is a great time of life. I do think you should at least have a sense of the career path you want to follow. Not the specific job, but a sense of the field.

partyrock's avatar

@Bellatrix – I’m not really sure what major I want. I’m not really sure what I want to do. I have an idea. Something along the lines of helping people, travel, government, foreign policy, diplomats, humanitarians, united nations. I’m really restless so I would want a job that is hands on and works with people. I’d like to be a photojournalist too. So I’m not sure what major to do… Political Science maybe? I’m not really sure.

I love studying too. I do it on my own whenever I can.

How would I know which major to take? I’m going to a community college for the first 2 years. For the first 2 years of school is getting basic classes out of the way right?

partyrock's avatar

@Dog All I’ve wanted to do was help people, travel the world and work with foreign cultures, and pursue art. I’ve never had clear set lines like “I want to become a doctor”, or “I want to become an actress”. I wish I did though, it would be easier to decide exactly what I want to do with my life.

partyrock's avatar

@Aethelflaed – That’s exactly what I was thinking the importance of getting a degree was. I need to be responsible and think about my future. To be stable or have something to show for myself. Is poly sci basically studying governments and politics? Do you think this would be a good major in if I wanted to become a diplomat or work a job with foreign policy or the UN ? I don’t know what to major in. But anyway I will go to a 2 year community college then transfer to get my bachelors.

One of the problems is I’m very restless. I get bored really easy. That’s why photojournalism is such a good fit for me because there’s always an adventure, plus it’s art mixed with helping people.

I need to be stable though and have something to show for.

Bellatrix's avatar

@partyrock, why not start out with something like a Bachelor of Arts, pick some courses around your political/social science interests. You would have to check how it works over there, but here you can always start studying and then move into a more specific degree. The key is not to leave it too long to decide which direction you want to go in. You don’t want to do a heap of courses and then find they don’t really fit with the degree you really want to do.

I would suggest doing some research and see what has you going “Oh yeah! I would love that”. I changed my mind quite a few times before I found the path that was right for me. They were all connected though. If you know you want to work with people and it seems you have a strong interest in politics, social issues, that is a good start.

partyrock's avatar

@Bellatrix – What exactly is a Bachelors of Arts? Is it studying Art?

partyrock's avatar

@Bellatrix Funny thing is I looked at the Foreign Service Exam and it says anyone from 21 to 60 can join! Or test.. and it said “We require no specific education level, academic major, proficiency in a foreign language for an appointment as a Foreign Service Officer.” Weird! But I don’t think being a Foreign Service Officer is the same as being a Diplomat right? Surely they wouldn’t just take anyone who aced the test without a degree of some sort.

partyrock's avatar

@Bellatrix – International Relations looks really good to me, a major I could be interested in.

Bellatrix's avatar

I can only speak in the Australian context but a BA is a generalist degree. You can study linguistics, history, religion, women’s studies, sociology, literature, politics. All sorts of things. Here you would choose a major and perhaps a minor and study around those specific areas. You said you like photojournalism, you can do journalism degrees and study photography within that degree here. You could even check out art schools. Do some research. There is no rush. I know you probably feel like time is marching on but you are still a baby from where I’m sitting so you have plenty of time to try things out in life until you get that sense of what ‘your passion’ is. You can wait to go to college until you have a clearer sense.

Or check out what degree programs are available near to you that cover International Relations and what occupations that might take you into. Start researching and asking questions until you find something that really appeals.

partyrock's avatar

@Bellatrix So a Bachelor’s degree in art is a major but I can choose other courses? Is that what they call someone’s “minor” ?

partyrock's avatar

@Bellatrix – Thank you!

Bellatrix's avatar

When you do a degree, you will complete a major (this the key area of study you focus on) and a large number of the courses you complete will focus around that field. You may also be required to study a minor (less courses) but still focused around a topic. Some degrees have double majors. Two major fields of study. So when you are looking at a degree program, you will often see main topics covered described as majors. So in a business degree, you might take a major in tourism or human resources. You will also be able to choose electives. Courses that are not specific to your major field of study but are of interest to you.

Hope that makes sense?

Aethelflaed's avatar

@partyrock You choose two areas you really like to study. Your major requires 36 credit hours within that field, so 12 classes (because most classes are 3 credit hours). Your minor requires about 21 credit hours, so about 7 classes. Then you fill out the rest of the hours with general requirements (like one of English, one of math, one of science, etc), and then a few general electives of your choosing.

One thing about the community college: Taking one year cheap is a really great idea. Two, however, can turn out well, or it can turn out kind of a waste. It really depends on if the classes you take transfer as what you took them as (like, will a History of the Renaissance transfer as History of the Renaissance, or just as a general history class). And, within the graduating school, the requirements for what non-major/minor classes you have to take can be really complicated and varied based on the major you choose. Most people who start out at a junior college end up having to take at least another year of school at the graduating school to complete all the requirements, because maybe they thought a class would transfer and it didn’t, or they were unclear on the requirements, or the community college didn’t offer the class they needed, or… And, because of how majors are (now) set up with regard to prerequisites, you often can’t take them just the last two years. Sometimes you can tackle some of those prereqs at a junior college – e.g. a junior college might not have an art history program, but it might offer Art History 101 and 102, helping you out.

augustlan's avatar

I’m a high school dropout, and I regret that I never went to college.

JLeslie's avatar

I recommend going to a 4 year school off the bat if you can, or going to a community college at first, but not waiting to get a AA, transfer sooner. Some universities will not take a sophomore transfer, so check that, but many will. You also should make sure the courses you take at your community college are transferable to the universities in your state at minimum, and other states if there is a specific school out of state that interests you.

I have a BA in Marketing. People get BA or BS degrees (bachelor of science). BA does not mean an “art” degree. These are the types of things that are very confusing to young people at first understandably. If you spend some time on University websites, I think you will get more interested in going to school, start to know the lingo. More importantly go to visit a couple universities, let someone take you around campus, talk to some students. I think visiting is the most important part, because you can start to picture yourself there, if you like that partiuclar campus, see the dorms, the football stadium, the performing arts center, where most of the photography classes are held, whatever interests you. My university was large, it was like its own town practically, we had everything, and campus was beautiful. I know what it is like to be your age, I know it can feel scary and paralyzing, especially the unknown. College is an unknown for you, the more familiar and knowledgable you feel about it, the easier the decision will be.

I don’t remember if you said whether your parents have degrees?

rts486's avatar

It was great for me, both educationally and as a life experience.

partyrock's avatar

@JLeslie – My mom is a nurse (retired) and my dad, I’m not sure if he has degrees. But he is really succesful. He has a house up in the Hollywood Hills and he used to be in real estate, and a captain in the Army back in the 80’s. Not sure if he has a degree.

JLeslie's avatar

@partyrock I was only asking because if your parents did not go to college, they would be possibly less likely to know how to help you with going to college. I don’t mean they would not be supportive, I mean for them also college might have terminology they are unfamiliar with, or they may not know how the whole thing works; when application cut off dates tend to be, that you can take the SAT more than once, things like that. My husband’s parents have 5th and 8th grade educations, they always cared about his education, but when it came to going to college he had to do it all on his own. They paid for everything, but they had no idea what was available, out there, in terms of degrees, different schools, what campus life is like, that he could visit schools and take a tour, etc. So, he just applied to the community college near where his sister lived, because he did not really know what else was out there. It wound up working out just fine, but I think he would have preferred to go to a big football school (he had played since elementary school through high school) and a school with a bigger campus life. He just didn’t know how to go after it, it seemed unnaccessible to him I guess when he was young. Money was not even very much a part of the equation because he paid out of country tuition no matter what school he went to.

If your mom was a nurse she has at least a 2 year degree.

Where do you live?

partyrock's avatar

@JLeslie – Do I need to pass/take the SAT in order to go to school ? Or to have a Bachelor’s ?

Hollywood, California.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@partyrock Most colleges want you to take the SATs and include that score on your application. You don’t just need to pass them, but do well. I thought you were already in college – am I missing something?

Aethelflaed's avatar

@partyrock Many schools require the SAT. Others require the ACT. Some schools require both, others require neither.

JLeslie's avatar

Most schools on the east coast require the SAT. Most midwestern schools the ACT, some will take either. California I’m not sure, tinyfairy and judi would know.

What grade are you in? You’re still in high school right?

Paradox25's avatar

Don’t go just for the sake of going or because of what you’ve seen others do, but go to college if there is something you’re extremely passionate learning about. Also, make sure it is a viable career choice for you that will benefit yourself financially and mentally down the road. I’ve seen many make poor decisions choosing to go to college and not only do they regret their choices but they’re still paying off on their mistakes. Choose wisely and choose something that you are very passionate about.

whitetigress's avatar

@augustlan You know its never too late :D Go at your own pace, 1. select a community college/register (get your name in the system it’s free) 2. take the placement test (for english and math) 3. select some courses that interest you 4. pay registration fees 5. if you get really into it find time to meet with a counselor on campus/set up counselor appointment for a student education plan 6. it’s all you from there :D

augustlan's avatar

@whitetigress Someday, when my kids are all grown, I may do just that. :)

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