There’s been a huge trend of studies being done recently (amidst market saturation and increasing student debt up to $1 trillion) that prove that people who get bachelor’s degrees earn up to $300,000 - $2.3 million more than those who don’t.
Facetiously, these studies are performed/funded by banks and government-ran institutions.
Basically, the worth of a degree is simply not a black & white subject.
The issue with these studies is that it’s a huge variable - and it’s missing a very important piece of data:
What jobs/industries are directly causative for the raise in net present value of a degree?
There are certainly majors and industries where going to college/having a degree or having a certificate can make you a substantial amount of money over someone in the same industry without one. A good example of these are government jobs, economics, statistics, accounting, anything medical, and even most types of engineering.
Those are not the only rule, though. What about fine arts, communications, or just the new influx of people who love to create new things?
Let’s look ahead, though. Throw ourselves aside for a second - think about the next upcoming generation who are growing up right now making content on their mobile devices and computers, and have since they were about three. Most of those kids are going to grow up wanting to create new things - and they’re going to be so good at it because they will have 10x more experience than us. In fact, because they’ll have the opportunity, time, and resources earlier in life to work/play at their hours of skill; they objectively will be more skilled than many college graduates right now once they graduate high school.
I believe these studies would be a lot different had they brought the threshold down to certain fields of work. I think in something as subjective and arbitrary as art and communication - knowing what is “good” is hard and teaching how to make “good” subjective work is harder. It will continue to be harder as the next generation goes through life as autodidacts who make their own path while they’re hammered by the old world telling them to ‘stay the course’.
These studies and articles did their job, though - it will convince prospective high school graduates into attending the system that has worked for decades. That’s not to say that the system won’t still work for some, but I think we’re going through a major transition in switching from an industrial economy to an idea economy. Humans/consumers want human resonation. Employers and businesses want to resonate with people because of that. This is negating the fact that most of the next generation will grow up watching people who created their own businesses that soared - jolting them into being aspiring entrepreneurs rather than working to land a job.
These studies could be dangerous to the entrepreneurial creators of our generation who are just now graduating high school, but it’s more dangerous to the future of autonomous content creators who are still developing as kids right now.
The future isn’t going to be made of cookie cutter education structures. Steer the wheel. Aim where you want to go, and stay your own course.