Pala: Is a Bachelor’s degree still worth it?

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Rowan students celebrate at the university's commencement. - Photo via Rowan University

Four years ago, my peers and I stepped onto our respective college campuses for the first time, wide-eyed and impressionable, embarking on a journey that would be like no other. Each of us had our own preconceived notion of what it would entail, and many of us abandoned that notion in the semesters that followed.

Many of us have a broad idea of what a useful member of society was and how to maximize our potential, using the requirements of majors a guide in understanding how the world works and where people can fit within it.

To add to the pressure of deciding on a career path that is expected to last forever, graduates over the last couple of decades have witnessed a decrease in the value of the degree they work so hard to achieve. The universal understanding of the depreciating value of a bachelor’s degree causes many students to reconsider where they can apply themselves, and in many cases, people compromise on their dreams and settle for a path that seems secure.

One thing I’ve learned during my time as a student is that security is a myth. After arriving to that conclusion, I pondered the purpose of all of this.

College is like a long hug from life: it’s warm and welcoming, but also a bit too tight for your liking. In my time here I have come to realize that above all, the purpose of these experiences is far different from what I believed them to be at the outset. The last four years have given me the freedom to assess presets and positions in society, and personally decide whether I want to go through the trails made for us, or carve a new lane in the soil for others to follow.

While education is given in school, the real teacher is the freedom of choice, and each student’s daily application of it. My choices granted me the ability to find my purpose in a world that presents me with many, leading me to believe that my bachelor’s degree might just be worth it.

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