The College Mandate.
50+ Years of Relentless Messaging.   
https://educationdata.org/average-cost-of-college-by-year

"A college education is your best chance for success"

"You HAVE to go to college......you'll need something to fall back on"

"College is an investment in your future."

"They won't even CONSIDER you for a great job without a degree!"  

"Just look at the data.  College graduates will out-earn NON-college graduates by a million +$'s."   

Sound familiar?

Believe me when I tell you this: 

I am a MASSIVE believer in education.  It had a truly TRANSFORMATIONAL impact on my life and where I sit today.  I am the furthest thing from "anti-college" as you will find. 

 

HOWEVER.......

I do not believe that you should cripple yourself with massive debt in order to pay for that education.  There is a practical nature behind any investment decision.  Costs need  to be weighed carefully against the expected benefit, and projected out as far into the future as possible.  

The truth is, ANYTHING taught in college*  can be found in multiple places, for FREE.  

*  Note- This statement does not apply for "degree mandatory" fields:  Medical, Law, some STEM etc. 

I'm also a strong believer in the fact that many of the most valuable life lessons do NOT happen in the classroom.  They happen in the real world, and often take multiple decades to discover.  

Some facts to consider:  Below charts, unless specifically notated are sourced from the education data initiative:

https://educationdata.org/

College Costs Going Through The Roof, & There's No End In Sight!

$40k per household, $1.7 trillion, no end in sight

annual cost chart.jpg
national student loan debt.jpg

Driving massive debt levels approaching 2 TRILLION $.
*  43mm borrorwers with an average loan balance of nearly $41,000 per borrower.  

But we often hear (depending on the source) that college graduates out-earn high school grads by 7 figures+ over the course of a lifetime right? 

 

There's a lesson in statistics:  Correlation does not imply CAUSation.  Just because 2 factors move in the same direction (the presence of a college degree and income levels), it does not mean that one CAUSES the other.  

And if the earning power of a college degree is so great, why do so many struggle with their debt payments?  

The Cold Hard Facts Of a College Education Indicate The Degree is Anything BUT a "Sure Thing"

  • 40% will not even graduate, but the debt stays with them

  • And the debt holders, whether they graduate or not are STRUGGLING
    *  15% of the loans are in default at any given time
    *  11% of borrowers default within the first 12 months

  • ​*  25% of borrowers have defaulted within the first 5 years​

  • And the UNDER-EMPLOYEMENT Rate among college grads is alarmingly high at 41% among recent college grads:  Said differently, 41% of recent college grads did not need their degree to be working in their current jobs.*

  • *  Source:  https://www.newyorkfed.org/research/college-labor-market/college-labor-market_underemployment_rates.html

And what is different TODAY vs. 25+ years ago?  TECHNOLOGY. 
The Information is no longer stuck in the confines of the college classroom.  

Technology has enabled massive Growth In Online (often free) education opportunties

mooc growth.jpg

The above data points are alarming, and at the very least, open the door for what I call "An Adult Conversation" that is needed around college, ESPECIALLY if Debt Financing is the source of financing that education.

The decision of going to college, ESPECIALLY if student or parent loans (debt) is a source of the financing will be one of, if not THE biggest financial decisions one will make.  Most approach the process too late, and too casually.  We've curated multiple hours worth of information to begin that adult conversation.   Below are a few links to posts, with plenty of video and studies to begin taking a hard look at the college dilemma. 

Once you get a sense for one path (college) you can explore the Brick By Brick Apprenticeship program, the 4 pillars and start to compare which path makes the most sense.  


Drop us your email, we'll be organizing zoom information sessions to answer questions, review all of the material on BrickbyBrickFuture.com and to review our own ROI model of the apprenticeship program vs conventional paths. 

We are NOT here to sell you, but we do want you to be informed of all your options.  

Further Deep Dives Around an Adult Conversation (Pink Highlighted Article Links)
7 Great Videos From Varied Perspectives Around College Value: 
Adult Conversations About College

We Are Rankings Obsessed, & It's A Problem
College Rankings:  Houston, We Have a Problem!


Guiding A Basic Conversation/Thought Process:  
ROI #1:  Getting RIGOROUS About Your Plans (College Or OTHER)

Helpful Tools & Studies To Get Familiar With
ROI #2:  Available Studies & Evaluation Tools


A thoughtful conversation with Mike Rowe on the state of higher education, the skills gap and the relentless PR campaign that pushes high cost college at every turn.