Formal education such as college—although beneficial in some minute ways—is the most expensive and inefficient way to learn, grow, and become of value to oneself and to society.
In comparison to other forms of education, formal education does little to prepare human beings for a fulfilling life, let alone a rewarding career.
If grade school, college, and other formal education was so beneficial based on the time and money people invest in it, governments, corporations, and manipulative marketers wouldn’t be able to get away with a quarter of the shit they do.
Most 401k’s wouldn’t exist as they are.
Half of the prescription drug companies would vanish.
And I’d be out of business (Ultimate Freedom Lifestyle) because everyone would already know and understand all the information I sell.
One shining example of how poor a job formal education does is the complete lack of financial education offered from grade school on.
Money is one of the most important subjects to a citizen’s well-being and yet it’s not taught in public schools and most college level financial courses are a joke.
You’ll learn more from a simple 2-3 hour read such as Rich Dad, Poor Dad, then you will in the combined 16 years of grade school and college.
That fact is horrendous and embarrassing.
And here’s the craziest part: in this day and age, all the information that has ever existed—specifically that found in colleges—can be found on the Internet FOR FREE.
If people truly want to learn and become more valuable to themselves and others through the acquisition of knowledge, all they have to do is type in their question on Google, YouTube, or Quora, and they’ll be able to learn just about anything they desire, and certainly anything taught in a University.
(Exceptions include becoming a lawyer, doctor, engineer, etc, where a degree is essentially mandatory.)
Any problem that could possibly exist in one’s life, someone else has, more than likely, already figured out, and the answers are all on the interwebs right at your fingertips.
And if you’re dead set on taking a course from the likes of MIT, HARVARD, or even YALE, they’re all offered online for free on their own websites, through iTunesU, or many other resources such as Coursera.
Here’s what it says on MIT’s Open CourseWare page:
“There’s no signup, no enrollment, and no start or end dates. The entire OCW collection is always here for you. Freely browse and use it at your own pace.
Knowledge is your reward. We don’t offer credit or certificates for using OCW. Instead, use OCW to guide your own life-long learning, or use OCW to teach others.”
If the accumulation and application of valuable knowledge is really what you’re after—and it should be—it makes no sense to drop $50-100k on student loans and then spend the next 10+ years living in debt struggling to pay it off if you don’t immediately land a $100k+/year job, which clearly most won’t.
Today, accruing such debt is absolutely absurd.
The truth is, with student loans being handed out like candy—essentially free money in the short term—the market has adjusted and Universities have dramatically raised their prices on tuition to astronomical rates.
Students don’t care because they’re too naive to realize the impact of their decisions on their future self. I see it all the time; friends stuck working jobs they hate because they have to make $600-$800/monthly student loan payments.
If they take a job in their chosen field but realize it’s not for them, and then decide they want to take off and go travel the world to expand their experiences and figure out what they want to do with their life—they can’t.
Since 2008, student loan debt has gone up 84% (WTF?!)
It’s no longer about educating the future of this country, it’s about profiteering off the naiveté of the young and inexperienced.
If you want to learn, grow, and be of value to yourself and the world, find the right books, videos, and other resources on personal development, learn from them, and begin immediately applying what you’ve learned to real life situations.
If you’re NOT the entrepreneurial type, you can easily get an entry level job at a good company in a field you’re interested in, and if you show promise by adding tremendous value to the company, you can shoot right up the ladder, especially in a sales position.
The other thing is companies are beginning to change their rules about having a degree because there are too many examples of non-formally-educated 20-something year olds making a massive splash in the business world.
And if you DO have that entrepreneurial spirit, college is definitely not the path for you. You can start an online business that solves a bothersome problem in your OWN life as well as many others, or simply pick any one of the hundreds and thousands of business models out there that exist. Remember, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. All you need to do is fulfill a need in the marketplace.
Stop listening to the “experts” because they’re just regurgitating rhetoric that appeals to the status quo.
If you want to get ahead of the lethargic masses, you need to become a leader—first for yourself, and secondly, for others.
You need to think for yourself and make your own observations about what’s going on in the world, this way you can make the best decisions for YOUR life.
Otherwise, you’ll more than likely end up in massive amounts of debt, become trapped working a job you hate in order to pay it all off, and end up living a life you dread.
If you take all your cues from the status quo, then you’ll never get further than the masses, which trust me, won’t be very far.
As much as it sucks to think about, most people are headed for a life of mediocrity, and they won’t figure it out until it’s far too late and the foundation of their lives have already been established.
This of course makes it much more difficult for people to change once the “concrete has set”, because at that point, most will settle for mediocrity instead of putting in the work to rebuild their lives.
So don’t follow what everyone else is doing. Be a leader for yourself and others.
And as a rule of thumb, ALWAYS question the status quo. If everyone’s doing it, there’s a high chance it’s the wrong way or there’s a better way.
Many of the greatest achievers to ever exist either never attended college, or dropped out midway because they didn’t see the value in it.
It’s not because they were geniuses. It’s because they observed the situation and listened to their common sense and reasoning, instead of taking cues from what everyone else was doing, which was also the reason why they were able to make a big difference in the world.
Because they thought for themselves.
If the majority of the population were doing things the right way, 75% of Americans wouldn’t be broke and hate their job, and 1% of the world wouldn’t be worth more collectively than the other 99% combined.
Think about that next time you make a decision based on what everyone else is doing, especially when it comes to college.
“When I find myself on the side of the majority, it’s time to pause and reflect.” —Mark Twain
“It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.” —Albert Einstein
“Formal education will make you a living. Self education will make you a fortune.” —Jim Rohn
Other INCREDIBLE educational resources:
TED.com — “TED is a nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas—from science to business to global issues (really, all topics)—usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or less).”
Coursera — “Free online courses from the best universities.”
Khan Academy — “Free. Online. Forever.”
edX — “Mission: Increase access to high-quality education for everyone, everywhere. Enhance teaching and learning on campus and online. Advance teaching and learning through research.”
Awaken The Giant Within: How To Take Immediate Control Over Your Mental, Emotional, Physical, and Financial Destiny by Tony Robbins — if there was only one book I could recommend to someone, this would be it. There is no better all-encompassing book on life and success on the planet.
My parting advice: if you’re a recent high school graduate or you’re thinking about going back to school, make the right decision for YOU and question EVERYTHING along the way. This single decision is a big one, and can determine the direction of your entire life.
And if you’re interested in a one-stop-shop program that’ll provide you with the mental, physical, and financial knowledge you need to attain personal power and design a life you’ll never need to take a vacation from, go here: Ultimate Freedom Lifestyle
What are your thoughts on college/formal education? Share in the comments below. But as a warning, think of my comments section as entering into my living room—if you don’t know how to have polite debate, I’m going to delete your shit and kick you out! Much love.