Could We Be Seeing The End of the College Era?

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“After 114 years, Sweet Briar College revealed this week that it would close after the spring 2015 semester…” reports Business Insider. While this announcement shocked many, it did not surprise “entrepreneur and billionaire investor Mark Cuban”.

“For years, Cuban has been warning of a “student loan bubble,” which he says will soon burst and leave many schools suffering. On Tuesday, after Sweet Briar made its announcement, Cuban tweeted “This is just the beginning of the college implosion,” reports Business Insider.

Cuban says that the education bubble is growing with rising tuition costs and astronomically student loan debt, which students may not be able to pay back. According to Business Insider, the total college loan debt is just over $1.3 trillion.

“This debt ultimately will outweigh most of the potential benefit you’re getting from the college education,” Cuban said. “What you thought you were going to get in quality of life by going to that college, you’ve just undermined with the amount of debt you’re taking on.”

This is especially relevant considering the recent criticisms of potential GOP 2016 Presidential candidate Scott Walker, a college dropout. Red Millennial’s own Joe Kaiser, wrote an excellent column explaining why Walker’s lack of a college degree is irrelevant to his potential candidacy.

I think that the potential “college implosion” as Cuban calls it could be a very good thing.

As Jim Rohn says, “Formal education will make you a living, but self-education will make you a fortune.” I struggled with the decision to even go to college as I began to understand many years before I was ready for college that the value of a college education was on the decline.

However, I am very grateful that I decided to go to college, as I have been presented with many opportunities I never would have received had I not decided to go to college. For example, I wouldn’t be part of this amazing, Red Millennial team had I decided not to go to college. I met our founder, Julia Porterfield in history class and several months later she invited me to write for Red Millennial.

So I feel as if college turned out to be the right decision for me, even if not because of the education itself. I have always understood the importance of self-education as well. Never stop learning. Not after high school; not after college; not until you die.

As far as the astronomical student debt goes, I believe it is possible to achieve a college degree without debt. I have been in college for 3 years now, and am not only not in debt, I have managed to squirrel away significant savings. How? First, I have been fortunate enough to remain in my parents home for the last three years while working and taking classes online. Online classes are much more affordable and obviously living with my parents has enabled me to save a great deal of money. Lastly, I make sacrifices in other areas such as books, clothes, or whatever it might be that I don’t really need.

While college education is certainly not a bad thing, we need to re-evaluate the value we put on a college education and if it is worth acquiring as much debt as most have to take on in order to achieve it. The inevitable busting of “the student loan bubble” will force us to do view college education in a new perspective.

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