'Blue-Collar Brilliance' Should Everyone Go To College?

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Don’t Be Afraid of the Working Class Many people are faced with a challenging decision involving education. Education can lead to an enjoyable future and a more lucrative career. The articles “Blue-Collar Brilliance” by Mike Rose and “Should Everyone Go to College?” by Stephanie Owen and Isabel Sawhill attempt to answer the question of whether or not college is necessary. Should college be pushed as a requirement to gain intelligence and wealth? Both authors use very different tactics to persuade you of their point. While Rose uses life experiences and observations of people, Owen and Sawhill take a more factual approach using statistics. Mike Rose, the author of “Blue-Collar Brilliance”, Explains how his mother was a waitress and the observations …show more content…
”, take a stance on whether or not a four-year college degree is worth the time and money you put into it. Simply put, Owen and Sawhill believe college isn’t for everyone. People are in different situations and have different goals that play a factor on the worth of a college degree. Owen and Sawhill remind us that it is a well-known fact that on average, people with a college degree make far more money than people with only a high school diploma. They state that not all college degrees or graduates are equal. College may not be a fruitful investment for some. Although the average return on investment of a college degree is mostly positive, it is not a fact for all cases. All values of education will differ. Owen and Sawhill claim that by telling people they should go to college no matter what, we are possibly doing them a more harm than good. Owen and Sawhill state that studies suggest that “the return to an additional year of college is around 10 percent”, but they express how there are other factors to consider. One of these factors is the cost of college. The cost of college can greatly effect how beneficial the investment will be. Another issue to think about is opportunity cost, or how much money could have been possibly gained if that person was working full time instead of attending college. Owen and Sawhill claim an opportunity cost of $54,000 for a four-year degree. They also express how they understand there are non-monetary benefits of school. Education is seen to improve things like health, marriage, and social interactions. Similarly they recognize that personal preferences have an influence on people’s careers, not just money. Acknowledging how these realities will effect college cost-benefit calculations, they push forward. Owen and Sawhill sate “the gap in annual earnings between young high school graduates and bachelor’s degree holders working full time is $15,000”.

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