The unemployment rate of 12.6 percent for recent bachelor’s degree recipients is certainly disconcerting to the new crop of high school graduates heading to college this fall. In fact, recent news stories suggest that faced with this jobless rate, young people may believe the traditional four-year degree is not worth the investment in time or money. This simply is not true. A college education is essential to achieve career success. But a four-year degree is not the only option.
There are college alternatives for those who seek a faster path to a career. For instance, career-oriented diplomas and degree programs focus on curricula that train students for high-demand professions, such those in health care, paralegal, IT or skilled trades. These career colleges conduct short-term intensive training programs that accelerate the education process, allowing students to earn a degree or certification in a condensed time frame. Most offer convenient scheduling on weekends, early mornings and evenings for students who hold jobs.
There is a college for everyone. High school grads should explore their options.