Affording college is often on the minds of parents, so let’s rethink the idea of college and how we pay for it!
So, we’ve established the fact that children are a blessing, and we’ve covered how to feed them, now for another biggie…
You probably think I am talking about homeschooling them on the cheap, but I’ve already covered much of that in another post. This post is about what the world deems as a big drain when you have a large family…COLLEGE
How do I afford to pay for college for all of my kids?
I’m going to give you fair warning…this post is counter-cultural. Stick with me, pray your way through it all, and let me know your thoughts at the end.
First off, I do not believe every child should go to college. Suggesting that is like suggesting the plumber who skillfully unclogged your drain is not good at what he does simply because he doesn’t hold a college degree. It is like suggesting a person is unintelligent or “less than” if they haven’t been to college. It is buying into the lie that paying thousands of dollars to a government or private institution of higher learning creates a better citizen, a better worker, a better Christian.
WATCH – A conversation with Mike Rowe on college.
This is nonsense. And actually detrimental to our society! We NEED people who do jobs that keep the infrastructure of our nation running smoothly.
And the notion that ALL kids need to go to college steals your child’s individuality.
I want my children to pursue the giftings our Heavenly Father placed within them. I want them to take those to new heights for Him. However, the place to hone those skills is not ALWAYS a college.
Don’t presume all of your kids are going to college
It is actually highly unlikely that every single one of your children is college-bound. Therefore, there is a good chance you won’t be putting all of your kids through college.
So far, our oldest 2 children went to college, but our third child has no plans to attend as she entrepreneurial aspirations.
But, what if they DID all go to college?
You don’t “owe” your child a college education
To clarify – I don’t believe I owe my kids a college education, paid solely from my own pocket. They need “skin in the game” and be financially invested in their education.
This may mean scholarships, work study money, investments and savings, CLEPing out of certain subjects, taking classes online or at a nearby community college in order to pay less per credit hour, attend college nearby so as to be able to save costs by staying at home longer, and taking on full and/or part-time jobs to help pay tuition and fees.
It is not a requirement for children to be post-secondary educated on their parent’s dime. Yes, we want the very best for our children, but adults go to college, not children. And adults who pay their own way tend to make wiser decisions.
Back to the idea that not every one of our children will attend college…
What kids can do instead of college
Apprenticeships – I have a daughter who adores animals. We’ve talked about the possibility of her apprenticing herself out to a pet groomer in order to learn the trade and open her own shop someday.
The concept of learning firsthand may seem antiquated, but it shouldn’t. You can only learn so much from sitting in a desk with a textbook. Much more is learned hands-on.
We even see this in college grads who hit the workforce only to realize their impressions of their chosen career were not true to life. (Thus the reason so many degrees now require internships as part of their programs!)
Apprenticeships are a win-win situation, where the employer gets free labor and the employee gets free knowledge while making connections with potential clients and colleagues at the same time.
Pursuing Interests/Talents – Music, photography, website building, graphic design, cooking, etc. easily lend themselves to money making projects. I would much rather my children focus themselves on something they are truly passionate about, rather than spend copious amounts of time on classes they hate.
Real Life Focus – Much of college does nothing to prepare a person for what a real work environment will be like. Couple that with the fact that few 18 year olds are driven and focused enough to know what they are on a college campus for, and you have a recipe for thousands of wasted hours and dollars.
It is our hope and prayer that by the time our children are 18, they are adults. Part of the planning for their adulthood involves working on honing real life skills. We want them to learn money management, time management, creativity in every realm of home life. We are preparing them to be husbands and fathers, wives and mothers, but most importantly, followers of Christ and stewards of His blessings. The more real life we can pour into our children, the better. And through that real life training, they will be able to walk the path to their future with a steady focus, rather than a shaky insecurity.
LISTEN: Homeschool to College – How to Transition Your Teen
Certifications – Perhaps I have a plumber in my midst. Maybe my little guy who is forever into the tool box will be a mechanic. It does not make sense to push a child into a 4 year degree whose passion lies with a career that requires a certificate and initiative.
Americans have bought into the idea that the only proof of success is a college diploma and a job that requires that diploma. That simply is not true. Thankfully, God looks on a man’s heart…we should too.
Networking – Bet you didn’t expect that word to be in the mix! No, I don’t necessarily mean social networking on the internet (however, that can be helpful at times), I am talking more of the opportunities that come from being around people who share your passions and are perhaps further down the path than you.
We played host to a young man a few weeks ago whom we’ve known for many years. He is now an adult and pursuing an interest in politics. He was in the area meeting with some Christian politicians who were willing to come alongside our friend and mentor him. Networking often goes hand in hand with apprenticeships, but it can also stand alone as a young person meets new people and makes new connections.
Be an Entrepreneur – It is my hope that many of my children branch out and give voice to their passions through entrepreneurship. In many ways, that is what I do here. I love to write. I love to give others a taste of the Hope that is within me. I also manage to eke out a bit of money in the process. It’s nothing to write home about, but it does pay the bills and keep the lights on here at Raising Arrows®.
So perhaps my daughter’s love of animals WILL lead to a pet shop or grooming business. Or perhaps she will be a farm wife and save her family money by doing much of the animal husbandry herself. Or maybe her writing or photography will take off and create a side business. I am anxious to see if my encouragement of entrepreneurial ideas leads to anything as my children age!
How have we handled paying for college so far?
So, let’s talk a bit about what my older children have done so far because when I originally published this post my oldest child was 13 years old and only just starting to consider what he might do when he graduated from our homeschool.
First of all, it might benefit you to read the posts linked below:
Blake chose to go to college because everything he was interested in required a college degree – namely technology. He is now 23 and graduated from college with a degree in Business Communications.
For the first 2.5 years of his college career, he lived at home, and we gave him 2 years of my husband’s Post-9/11 Montgomery G.I. Bill and banked the Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) to help pay for the other kids’ potential college degrees.
Meanwhile, Blake took a Work Study job and started saving that money to help pay for his last 2 years of college. We could tell it was not going to be enough to actually pay for 2 full years, so he began formulating a plan for him to get a job off campus to help supplement.
But then, the college hired him as the LMS Administrator for the college AND paid for his final year of college! Praise the Lord! By the time he finished his contract with the college, he had 2 full years of work experience and was able to get an even higher paying job in the same field.
Our next child also chose to go to college because her passion is American Sign Language interpreting. In order to be certified to interpret, she has to have a college degree.
She started by going to Community College to get her General Education requirements out of the way as much as possible. She also worked part time and saved back all of that money to help pay for the private university she would eventually transfer to.
We decided to require her to pay for half of her schooling, so she worked really hard applying for scholarships and negotiating with the private university to get in-house scholarships. (It is important to note if your child has gotten good grades at community college, the universities are much more likely to give really good scholarships to get your child in the door!)
Megan is currently in her Junior year of college and is doing Work Study during the school year and has a full-time job during school breaks to pay her half of the tuition.
Our 17 year old daughter is a Junior in High School and has no intention of going to college at this time. She is working on building a house cleaning business while also working at a local apiary. A few years ago, she made the conscious decision to pursue a career that would allow her to “leave her work at the office” and give her flexible time to pursue her passions during her off hours.
Our 15 year old son is still in the process of weighing his options at this point, but is currently leaning toward not going to college and pursuing a certification of some sort instead.
Every single child has been different so far! And that’s probably the real takeaway from this post. Each child will choose a different path and each child’s education will need to be treated differently. And God will provide for each child differently as well!
Posts in this series:
How do I Afford to Feed my Large Family?
How do I Afford to Educate my Large Family? – this post
How do I Afford to Entertain my Large Family?
How do I Afford to Keep my Large Family Healthy?
Check out my Large Family page for even more Large Family Resources!
jay quiverfull families says
I think you invaded my mind/thoughts/conclusions and used my material to write this post 🙂
Amy R says
This is a concern that we hear a lot already, and this is how we feel as well, that not every child should go to college and that we do not “owe” them the sole responsibility of financing their college years if they do choose to go.
It is really helpful to see your wonderful list of “what they might do instead.”
Mary Joy @Seeds of Encouragement Sewn with Grace says
Can I stand up and cheer here??? Excellent post! We have a 15 year old daughter (my step-daughter) who lives with her mom full-time and visits us as fits in her schedule. She and I have talked about what she will do after high school. She says she wants to go to college. A 4 yr, live on campus college. However…she has NO idea what she wants to study in college. She says she someday wants to be a homemaker, if God allows her to marry someone who can afford to support her in that way. She insists (and her mother insists) that the ONLY way for her to make her wan in this world is college. Sigh…she says she will figure out what she will study while she is there…we have suggested many of the alternative ideas for her to explore first. To find out what she wants to do first. But she is not interested in them. She attends public school and her mom is a public school teacher. College is the option she has been given by her mom.
She has a real heart for sharing the Gospel with others…we suggested a few programs that would allow her to go with a group that provides amazing training and would give her an opportunity to spend a year or two as a missionary here in the US and over seas…and if she chose to go to college after that she could better know what direction to focus in…she is not coming from a family with a lot of money to spend on college let alone when she doesn’t know what she wants to do.
I come from a college educated from a college educated family. I have a BA…my husband has a B.A. and master level course work as well. My best years of study were the independent ones I did AFTER I graduated from college.
Sorry to go on and on here…you touched a nerve here…THANK YOU for this article!!!!
Building Home with Him,
Anita Chamblee says
My husband and I both have masters’ degrees, but have not pushed or even encouraged college for our 7 children. Our oldest daughter, almost 27 now, went for a semester to a local community college one year and another semester at a Christian college while living at home. We were disheartened by both experiences. She married shortly before her 22nd birthday and is now the mom to 3. Between completing her homeschool and marriage she was a mother’s helper to several local homeschool moms and had a couple of other part time jobs.
Our next daughter, 23 in a few months, is gifted musically and has been pursuing violin lessons for the last few years. She has been teaching violin for about 3 years now and is also teaching a little piano. One day a week she is tutor to another homeschooling family.
Our next child, son age 18, has been working with his father at The Homeschool Channel for the last 2 years. While there he has been learning how to use professional film cameras and editing equipment. He has edited many films now from homeschooling conferences across the country. While he is editing them he is learning so much from the conten : Voddie Baucham, Sally Clarkson, Elizabeth Smith, Zan Tyler, Debra Bell, Todd Wilson, Ray Notgrass, Kevin Swanson, and many, many more. This has really helped to solidify his commitment to homeschooling and has made it HIS own! Just the other day he was looking through the Apologia catalog that came in the mail and found a DVD that he had edited. How exciting is that! He also spends many hours writing and has a great interest in homesteading and is taking over our gardening endeavors….all the while continuing his own education at home. He will eventually begin some college studies via College Plus…and yes, he has filmed and edited material from their speakers as well.
Our next son is 14 and has a desire to go into medical missions. He is reading all the missionary bios I bring into the house. We are not a science heavy family….history and lit are our main loves, so it is a stretch for me to provide him with more science. We are encouraging him that if this is where he feels led that he will have to “own” it for himself and he is proving his motivation by tackling his science and foreign language studies quite well. We will probably go the College Plus route for him as well and then we will see where the Lord takes him.
Our next children are 11 and under…one girl and two little guys so we will see how the Lord shapes and molds them. Thankful for so many options today…
Christy dR says
Thanks so much for this post! I’m just as passionate about raising my kids ( really homeschooling gives you so much more time for that) focused on life skills that they do blossom into adults by 18. I was homeschooled, and didn’t go to college, I worked. I met my husband about a yr and a half out of highschool, dated for awhile ( he finished college/ started working/paid off school loans) got married. Imagine if I went off to college? I would have HAD to work, our son was born shortly after our first anniversary. I will also say it is amazing to watch God provide for the 2 siblings so far who have gone to college, one graduated with no debt and the other one has recently started college and God has been providing in so many different ways! My parents have 8 and God will provide when we trust Him and prioritize “no debt”.
Where can I give this post 100 thumbs up!!!!!!!!!!! Very very well said. Love it!
Wow! What a great post on a topic that so many just don’t know what to do or think about.
I think apprenticeships are a great way to learn.
I went to and worked and paid my way through my college career. I also chose an affordable school for me. My Dad helped me finish out my last semester when I didn’t have quite enough money to pay for my classes, but I was able to pay him back with in 6 months of graduation.
What my husband and I would like to do for any of our kids who wish to go to college is to have them stay close to home, attend a community college, and work their way through their first two or three years, which are often just basic classes that can be transferred almost anywhere. We would like to be able to partially help them pay for school the last year or two when the work load is heavier and depending on their chosen course of study may not allow much time to work, without it impacting their needed study time.
Nice work Amy…and this did take work. So, thanks from the grandfather who shares the same-size-don’t-necessarily-fit-all view. Pasting this to my “GKids” box and forwarding to daughter for her six. She gets your posts, but this will create needed dialog. Perhaps that’s a segment you can add in future post: How to bring the grandparents on board with your “Future Filosofy.”
What a great relationship you have with your daughter! Encouragement from parents, even as adult children, is much needed!
I’m going to post before I read through the comments. I love this post. I have often felt my children must go to college but I’ve changed my mind. The reason for this is that I paid my way through College, it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, it was NOT a happy time. it took me 10 years to get my degree and I felt like a failure because it took me so long. I graduated, got a job in my field, worked my way up to the director of a program with 17 clinics….the one thing I learned…I did NOT need my degree to do this job. I used nothing from my college education to “do” my job. Anyway, a lot of rambling, but I quit my career job to be a SAHM and I’ve never been happier and I use more of my college education now-food and nutrition-ha! I’m more focused on my children finding their God-given talents and building on those. So, Great post Amy! I’m sure this can be a hot button topic, but thanks for posting about it anyway!
Carla B says
I couldn’t agree more! There is so much more to life than a college degree. sometimes just finding something you enjoy doing and working hard at it will open up all kinds of opportunities. For someone who really struggled with bookwork school my husband found his genius and skills other places (cabinet building, carpentry, trucking, farm management, entrepreneurial and people skills). I suspect one of my sons (who is just like his dad) will never set foot in a College classroom but will take this world by storm ;). We may run from one extreme to another. I may have a child who is a Dr. and one who is a carpenter. Whatever they choose to do or not do in the future I trust God will use their unique gifting and abilities for his glory. Actually I’m praying that their various skills will be used in ministry someday.
I’ve known too many people who have all kinds of degrees but are stunted dysfunctional people sitting at home playing video games all day. I know a lot of people who don’t have a college degree but are doing what they love and are successful in the eyes of the world…and much more importantly God. We are putting away a little money each month in an resp that should equal about one years tuition of Bible school or college of some sort. It can also be transferred to certification courses or other trades as well. Beyond that they will have to be willing to put in the effort it takes. The fun of homeschooling now is that they can explore so many of their interests before they ever graduate highschool.
I think you are my twin sister. Great post, we are completely in agreement with you here. I don’t have a college degree and don’t regret not getting one. My husband has a master’s degree and needs it in his job. I DO wish I had learned how to cut hair, fix the dishwasher, decorate a house, maintain a garden … the list goes on. Do I use even the classes I took in high school? Not really!! Not that I wish I hadn’t taken them, I just wish there were more practical classes taught too.
Excellant!!! My husband & I have the same views as well & it’s refreshing to know we aren’t alone.
As a stay-at-home mom with a college degree (and the debt that comes along with it), I view things from both sides. My parents (who did not have college educations) strongly encouraged my sister and I to attend college. As missionaries, they did not have much, but scrimped and saved in order to pay for us to both attend a community college. What we did after that was up to us (to decide and pay for). Do I regret getting my college education? Not really, but do I think that I could succeed in life without it? Yes (after all, I’m not doing anything with it, really). My husband didn’t even complete high school and now has to work hard labor jobs in order to support us. So, he is a firm believer that if you can go to college, do it. It is tough out there these days for people with and without degrees, but college simply is not for everyone. While I do not think that a college education is bad, I agree, that there are alternatives and that it is not for everyone. I have decided to educate my children on all of the options and leave the decision-making up to them.
My husband and I want a big family, so it is great to hear someone say that you DON’T have to send every child to college and that as parents, we don’t “owe” it to them. I went to college with kids whose parents paid for EVERYTHING and trust me, it did them no favors. They were 20+ years old and did not know a thing about real life.
I also have a degree and do not really regret getting it (although I do regret some of the things I was exposed to in college). I know so much of the world has bought into the idea that you HAVE to have a college degree, which is why so many professions now require it, but it disturbs me to see parents pushing their adult children into the college atmosphere for no reason. We do intend to help our children as much as we can, but we do not feel we should pay for their schooling 100%. It’s all about balance–something our society desperately needs.
Balance is definitely key. I grew a lot as a person in college (attended both a Bible college and a Christian University), and all in all am glad for the experiences, but like you, I do not believe that you HAVE to get a college degree to succeed in life. I believe that most people lose sight of what is truly important (following God and doing His will for your life) and focus instead on what will bring the most success in this world. However, ultimately, worldly success isn’t what is important 🙂
great post. I agree with you whole heartedly
Excellent post Amy! As a adult who chose not to go the traditional college route as a teen, I couldn’t agree more. I’ll admit that there are a few classes that I wish I had taken (creative writing perhaps?) and there are a couple of classes that I have taken at my own pace/choice. Experience has taught me well that older children/young adults do make better decisions when they are responsible for every nickle and dime! And when they do make a costly mistake, they usualy learn quickly from that mistake. Our ‘schools of thought’ are much in line on this (and other!) subject. Great article.
Oh, I love this post! Agree with every single word. Excellent work! Thank you!
Great post, Amy!
My husband and I agree 100% both with letting kids choose what career might be best for them (whether it involves college or not) and with having them finance their own ways through school/training. I am just finishing a third degree, but this path has been part of God’s plan for me with the interests and abilities He’s bestowed – and strong leading on His part. My husband is in a job that he dreamed of as a boy – that utilizes his great mind and skills and didn’t require college.
My studies were so much more interesting and fruitful after I had been working (I worked on my M.S. part time while working in industry and have been teaching while finishing my doctorate.), and as a current college teacher, I truly wish my students had more work experience and direction to get the most out of their classes.
God has completely provided for my education. I have had NO debt for any of these degrees, and my parents did not support me financially. They made family a priority with my mom staying home with us and were not able to help out. I never expected it of them, and the Lord’s provision is even more evident this way!
As a college teacher who sees about 350 students come through my classroom each year, I’ve also noticed that there are plenty of college students (soon to be graduates) that do not have the motivation, attitude, or skills needed in the workplace. It scares me.
I also appreciate your comments on entrepreneurship! I think teaching your children that way of thinking will benefit them regardless of whether they open a business, manage a home, or work for a company.
I was thinking of you as I wrote this post and hoped you would chime in! And yes, entrepreneurship is useful no matter what your vocation!
Minni Saxton says
I have to say, that as a mother of 2 going to college, I hoped and prayed that I was not placed into groups with the “straight out of high school” students, since I always ended up picking up the slack for them. I totally agree with you!
Heather Johnson says
Three cheers for this article. As the mother of five I feel it is my God-given task, along with my husband, to pour things into my children’s lives that cause them to see the value of being godly, not of being like the world. My husband and I both have several degrees, and my husband teaches at a University, but I in no way see a college degree as essential to fulfilling God’s best for any individual.
With our oldest daughter we have used our local Jr College as a way for her to branch out and get credits (many of them in dance, theater and music which is a passion of hers) without succumbing to the culture’s view that a CHILD of 18 needs to leave the home and venture out of the protection of the family to learn life lessons.
College campus dorms mimic literally ZERO percentage of what life in a family (which God instituted) is supposed to be like. On what day in my life can I wake up and do whatever I want and have THAT kind of freedom…. never! Not even when I am on vacation! 🙂
We have 4 girls and 1 boy. My expectations for my daughters is not that they will ever be supporting their families or even having to contribute to the funds to meet basic needs for their children. That will be their husbands’ job; and if he dies, then we will step in and help. Trust in God has been lost, and we plan and scheme thinking that we are in control.
My son has different expectations, because if God leads him to marry he will be expected to provide for his family; however it is foolish to think that just because he has a college degree in hand this will magically happen. Even if it is from Harvard or Yale!!! (oops, did I just sin?!)
We are currently seeking internships for our oldest daughter, and are already networking and pursuing similar avenues for the interests of our second. My daughter who is an internationally competitive gymnast spends much of her time honing the God-given ability that she is so driven to strive for.
Thank you again for voicing something that more and more Christians need to hear!
Sad that we think/look/act so much like the world these days that we are indistinguishable from it!
Some fields require degrees (medical practice, public school teaching) and others don’t (web design, software development). You can usually find out which ones do and which don’t because the ones which can be self-taught instead say “degree or equivalent experience” in the job posting.
Also, lots of people have done very well without much formal education. For instance, Thomas Edison like only completed 3rd grade. Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, the Twitter founder / owner, the Facebook founder, and the guy behind the company that builds the software this blog runs on — all didn’t get a college degree…though the entrepreneur route does require long work hours.
My Mom actually pressured me into certain fields when I was young “You can’t be a psychology major. You’ll need to support a family some day.”, and I am now glad that she did. 🙂 So I think there might be a lot of influence in guidance parents can give. If I had known I could have done what I’m doing now (web / software development) w/o a degree, I would have just totally skipped going to college and been better off for it.
Amy, thank you for sharing this amazing post. We are of the same opinion about college not being necessary, because there are other avenues available and not every career needs a college degree. We are strong advocates of teaching our children to seek out God’s will for their lives, whether that means a college degree or not.
We are also of the opinion that we need not finance every single penny of whatever route they choose. We pray that by the time they are of age to to walk out these decisions we’ve instilled in them the value of hard work and responsibility for themselves.
Our children are still very young – our eldest is only 7 – but we believe knowing where we stand on this issue (and so many others) allows us the ability to parent them for their future (not just for *right now*).
I completely agree with you and I thank you for writing this post. As a college graduate and the loans that go along with it, I am not even using my degree. I always knew I wanted to be home raising our children, so why did I go to school, because the world said I was nothing without it. I now see I was blind and will be discussing this with our children, to see what their hearts/talents are, and if college will help them develop those.
carrien (she laughs at the days) says
I commonly say that there are very few 18 year olds who are capable of making a good decision as to what to do with the rest of their life. If I had a degree to do over it would be in a much different and more practical field than the one I actually took.
I think we as a culture press kids into college because we don’t think they are ready yet for grown-up responsibilities, marriage children, jobs, etc. But I ask, who’s fault is that anyway? Why aren’t we teaching our children such that they are capable by the time they finish school.
I agree wholeheartedly with your statement that we should pour as much real life into them as possible.
Great post! 🙂 I went to college, but ended up doing accounting- nothing to do with my major. I had worked for a woman while I was in high school and she started teaching me the basics of bookkeeping. When my dad started a company I started doing all his accounting for him. And now I am married and have four kids and still do his accounting from home for extra cash.
Rena Mayhan says
I am happy that I am not the only one that sees this. I have three boys and I tell them that if they choose to go to college they had better make sure it is Gods will for them first. I returned back to school when my boys were all in school to go into accounting. Didn’t want too at first, but God called me that to it so that I can witness while there. So while there I have learned that less than 30% of jobs available require a college education. If there are 39% of people to fill those jobs what percent will not get a job under their degree, at least 9%. Now tell me how many college educated people hold jobs that did not require their higher education. And why would I send my boys to college to do something God has not called them to do.
Thank you for the comments. You hit it right on, as you often do. Have an awesome day.
completely agree with your thoughts on this subject!
A Facebook friend shared this link that is relevant to some of the comments made. It looks at Dutch culture where few women work full time. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1364690/Have-Dutch-women-secret-happiness.html
Kate @ Modern Alternative Mama says
We think the same thing and have gotten slammed for saying so. But suppose we have a daughter who grows up knowing she wants to be a stay-at-home mom. What does she need to go to college for? Not that we’d push her towards that, but if SHE wanted it…. Or, like you said, an entrepreneur or someone needing technical school. College is NOT a necessary part of the human experience. Most of the “experience” in general education classes and partying anyway. I’d have preferred to entirely skip both. Yes…I have a degree. But I don’t use it. I only felt I “needed” it because I was pushed so hard towards it. Oh well.
(We have, however, started college savings accounts for each of our children…but won’t tell them we have them. They will also be expected to work hard to pay for school. And if their accounts are worth a lot, we’ll help them, or give them the money later as a wedding present.)
I have 2 thoughts to add to the discussion:
1) My husband is now a television producer, traveling around the world producing shows and music videos, and people are always amazed to find out that he doesn’t have a college degree yet makes as much (or more) than some of the college educated people in his department. It was his skill that opened the door for him, not his education.
2) I grew up homeschooled and had plenty of friends that were raised (and wanted) to be stay at home moms…but as of yet, for several of them, that hasn’t happened. They now all recommend that a girl should always be raised with a potential career in mind. Otherwise they may just be set up for disappointment and discovering in their mid-20s to early 30s that they really do have to go out and get a job and that Prince Charming isn’t just around the corner. Other friends that have gotten married have had husbands with health issues that have required these girls to support the family to some extent. Again, a career and the necessary education for it was so important! So that’s an important balance I would urge, especially with daughters who think that they’ll just be stay at home wives and mothers someday. You never know…
Amen! I love this post and I wish more parents would think this way. So many parents give their kids a free ride with thousands of dollars spent on college, only to have a child who doesn’t appreciate it and/or ends up working outside of the degree.
Don’t forget the career option of missionary. This is a calling that may or may not require a college degree.
I’ll be honest…I am rather bothered that being a missionary (or a pastor for that matter) requires a degree these days. No where in the Bible is that a qualification for reaching others with the Gospel. *sigh* Sorry for the momentary rant. 😉
Minni Saxton says
I am currently waiting on my 4th biological child and helping raise my step-daughter, as well. I am a first-generation immigrant from Europe and my parents subscribed to the policy that everyone needs college and a job is not worth a penny if it doesn’t require a degree. Therefore, i was forced to attend college straight out of high school and ended up dropping out int he middle of my second semester. My oldest two children were 3 and 4 by the time I decided that I wanted to go to college for ME. I helped pay my way through college with the help of grants and 5 years later achieved a Bachelor’s degree in 2012. However, looking for a job, I found out that a Bachelor’s degree puts you no closer to “those jobs” than a GED put you 12 years ago when I graduated high school! I completely agree that my children will need to pay toward their own educations and only go if and WHEN they deem it to be something they choose. I applaud your courage to put this out there!
Hi, Minni! We are also finding getting a Masters doesn’t help either. We know a lot of people with loads of education working jobs that don’t need nearly the amount of schooling they have.
You must be my soul sister. Everything you have said here I have said so many times. I got so tired of people asking “What about college” I just don’t worry about it. Those that want to go will,There is alwasys a way. I never belived I had to hand a college education on a platter to my kids. There are a lot of ways to be productive and successful. Love your blog
Hallelujah! You know what I love? When mom and/or dad pay for 8 plus years of college only for Junior to decide he doesn’t want to be a doctor after all and takes up the piano, which he masters effortlessly. I got sooooo much flack for not caring to attend college, even though what I desired to persue did not require a college education. Thank goodness for a father who supported whatever I chose.