Despite the many advantages associated with getting a university education; this isn’t a path that everyone wants to take. Some students loathe school and look forward to getting out of the education system as soon as possible, whereas others prefer to take a more vocational route and learn new skills while they work. Although having a university education can open up a wider range of job opportunities, if you don’t need a degree to pursue the career you’re interested in, why bother?
After all, obtaining a university education isn’t cheap. It may be reasonably easy to get a student loan, but the money has to be paid back in the end, even if interest rates stay low. There is increasing competition to get into the best universities, so that many universities are charging students more money, meaning that students come out of university in greater debt than students would have in previous years.
You not only have to pay tuition fees; you also have to find the money to pay for accommodation, nights out, as well as books and other bits and pieces that are required for your studies. You might be tempted to get a job while you study, but it can be extremely difficult combining a job and your studies, if you don’t want your grades to suffer. The theory is that a university education will give you access to higher paid jobs, so that although it might cost a lot to go to university, you will eventually make the money back, and more. However, there is no guarantee you will end up in a well-paid job, and so you could be left with debts that you are unable to pay off.
University can be an intimidating place to be, and you may not feel like you belong there, especially if no-one in your family has ever been to university. University tends to be dominated by middle-class students, and so if you are at the lower end of the social scale you might find it hard to relate to other people. It doesn’t help that going to university usually means leaving home, so that you break from your former ties. You can find yourself missing friends and family, which may affect your studies.
You may not enjoy the subject you have chosen to study, but feel you ought to stick at it, even though you know for the next three or four years you are going to really struggle to motivate yourself.
Going to university can be a positive experience, however this is not always the case, and for some people the disadvantages of going to university outweigh any potential benefits.