In my opinion the poll question itself here sets up a very interesting debate. <obviously>. Is education of a college level necessary or not? Well..thats a big old can of worms. Necessary to whom, for what, and BTW...what kind of education? What type of college?
Not an incredible deal has been said about your original post really....although a great many interesting other topics have been added.....
How did you pick your college or University and if you have children have you made plans yet?
My thoughts are this, without taking into account what others have already stated etc, that my idea was that an education was needed beyond high school for me personally. Was it the only way for me to become educated in the profession in which I am degreed? No. In fact, all collegues in the same profession think I lost my mind for paying a fortune for that education. I felt at the time, however that I desperately needed that education which included a great many things other than simply my preferred choice of major, and I was correct. The piece of paper and line item on my resume do nothing however for how I pay my bills. That experience came from my high school education and training. Which BTW was an inner city school, great on trades but lacking otherwise.
I choose the University I did due to a great many contributing factors, and price and/or acceptance really did not play a role. The available cirriculum, including month long internships, ability to take on minor areas of study, in a small private non coed, away from home environment was the only was I was going. Luckily, they wanted me
The choices we make for or against education are highly personal with a great many factors that contribute to the end result, for the most case. Those that dont make that choice either themselves, or for the wrong reasons, well, that is also a personal choice.
I do believe that in the NE for the last few years there has been a trend in HR practices to require degrees that are simply ridiculous...like a receptionist needs a Bachelors Degree...I know the phone systems can be a bit much..but really???? On the other hand most HR Departments will include that it is either a degree or a certian amount of experience that was being required of the position. Which also can inlcude or take into consideration military training. This is only a hinderance for those persons who dont have the background, or those recently graduated from high school. Now, I worked through High School, played Sports, and received Honors. Perhaps if there is a problem with the education system in general it lies in the end with the parents....really. The school is there, theres a library available for those who know where it is, and those students wishing to learn, to live life, will. Those who want a free ride, would rather just get an allowance than work, want to play sports and nothing else, want to sit home and play games, dont use their computers for learning, well..they're missing out on what is there for them, arent they? And is this completely their fault, or the fault of the government for not giving them everything they need? Is not learning to learn, finding out how to learn, seeking answers all part of the whole? I could rant on and on but, basically....
University learning isnt a bad thing, unless you let it be.
Not having a degree also isnt a bad thing, life lends its own lessons, and a piece of paper isnt going to make you better than the guy next to you.
Education and educators arent bad.
Students that dont take advantage of what they have available to them, well, they get what they deserve.
Parents who have children who dont learn obviously went wrong somewhere, or let something go wrong somewhere.