College is not for everyone

Ashton Bell, Editor


College is typically an institution for higher education. Harvard University is claimed to be the oldest institution of higher education, founded in 1636. As time has passed, a college education has been broadly sought after by a multitude of students. There are now nearly 4,000 post-secondary degree institutions in the United States as of 2020. With that being said, only 66.2 percent of high school graduates immediately enroll in college according to

With our counseling department at Tallmadge High School hosting “senior meetings”  the information regarding plans after graduation is abundant. After meeting with guidance counselors and discussing ways to succeed post graduation, I have reached a conclusion. Attending a college or university is not for everyone. College is a form of  secondary education that is only beneficial to some.

College is a challenging form of education. On average, Kent State University has roughly 40,000 students actively enrolled. Of those 40,000 students, 55.3% of first time students will fail to graduate. This can be caused by many factors such as lack of motivation, insufficient financial resources, lack of education, ect. In fact, the overall dropout rate for undergraduate students in the United States is 40% according to Not only are more and more students struggling in college level courses, they are failing to meet requirements resulting in failure to graduate. 

There are a multitude of students who fail to reach the benchmark of “college readiness”. Typically in a student’s year of high school they are expected to take the ACT, a test that measures one’s ability to perform in college level courses. The average ACT composite score in the state of Ohio is 20 while the average ACT composite score for  acceptance to The Ohio State University is 26. This margin means very many students will fall short of academic requirements for college. Not only do colleges rely on the ACT, they focus heavily on who the person is as a student. Many high school students fail to meet standards in their academics, deeming them unprepared for a higher education, regardless of who they are as a person. 

Not only are most colleges selective when it comes to academics, they are also expensive. says the average cost of a 4-year institution is $35,720 per year. The average yearly income for a U.S. citizen in 2019 was $35,977. This results in many college students taking out student loans to pay for college. Loans are a form of debt that can take several years to repay. Many students change their majors throughout their time in college. That results in a delayed graduation, and more money spent on education. With that being said, some people will not find a job that will offset the cost of their education making them financially unstable. On the other hand, a person who did not attend college could have a well paying, successful career in less time than it takes for a student to graduate college. 

College is not for everyone and confining someone to a college education would be limiting diversity within our community. I encourage all Tallmadge High School seniors to attend fall “senior meetings” (held through the months of September and October) to discuss options regarding life after high school.