UNCF Special Programs Corporation supports students from across the country to make meaningful contributions around the globe and in their own back yard. This summer, UNCFSP selected five students from various Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) to serve as SP Scholars. As part of their experience, Scholars were challenged to contribute to the corporation in various ways- one of which was to write a blog.
The second blog in the series was written by Susan Ahn, a junior Virginia Tech International Studies major:
Any investor must examine the pros and cons before making a large-sum investment. The same goes for students who pay for college. A four-year college degree is one of the largest investments young people will make, costing on average a total of $102,000! As tuition prices increase every year, many students and families wonder: Is a college degree truly worth the money? The answer to this question could be the difference between living comfortably and drowning in debt.
There are college graduates all over the country who struggle to decrease the college loan debt and the accumulated interest that comes with it. For Recent reports on CNN Money indicate that recent college graduates deal with 80 percent more debt than previous generations. Student debt has risen to unprecedented amounts and many high school students are debating whether they should even continue along on their educational paths and attend college.
There are some who argue that the long-term benefits of obtaining a college degree could outweigh the initial outlay of funds. A recent article in the Daily Mail highlights that college graduates make anywhere from $600,000 to $1,000,000 more than those who only completed a high school education. That is a big difference! Statistics show that a college degree is the highest financial return compared to investing in real estate or in the stock market. Although the cost seems hefty at first, a college degree reaps benefits for the individual that are well worth it when looking at the bigger picture.
Future college students can avoid large amounts of debt by applying to scholarships and getting internships or job experience over the summer. The UNCF Special Programs Corporation can help you do just that. The organization’s relations with many federal agencies and other non-profit organizations serve minority institutions and minority students with educational support services.
With that said, a college degree can be beneficial or unhelpful depending on what one does with it. Without a clear plan, a college degree can be worthless. Apply for scholarships, get an internship or a job, and then proceed with caution when making a loan. There are many people along the way such as professors, counselors, and UNCFSP that will guide you in the right direction so that students never miss an opportunity.
-Susan Ahn, UNCFSP Summer Scholar