Some interesting comments from reader John Kennedy (no relation, as far as I know) on the recent poll about people’s reasons for going to college. He writes:
There’s another question in this discussion that I didn’t address in previous comment. Apparently, kids going to college with no clear goal is somehow thought stupid (that’s the implication). But I would ask, how many 17- or 18-year-olds have any idea about the real working world or about their own strengths and limitations? How many can think? What about having a chance to grow up a bit? This is also what college provides. OK, expensive? Do the first two years of general education at a community college, not perhaps a fine intellectual atmosphere, but possible to live at home, listen to the instructors, maybe get a clearer idea about personal and vocational possibilities.
First off, I don’t think it’s necessarily “stupid” to go to college with no clear idea what you want to do. But these days it is a very expensive proposition. A lot of folks are taking a serious second look at college and coming up with some interesting suggestions.
I think John’s point about how young people are when they start college is well-taken. Something I’ve often wondered — why the rush to college? Maybe more people should work for a while after high school and only start college later, in their 20’s, when they’ve had a chance to get a better handle on who they are and want to be.
Personally, I think I was really ready for college at about age 30. But things aren’t set up to support that. Could they be?